Control of T helper 2 responses by transcription factor IRF4-dependent dendritic cells

Yan Gao, Simone A. Nish, Ruoyi Jiang, Lin Hou, Paula Licona-Limón, Jason S. Weinstein, Hongyu Zhao, Ruslan Medzhitov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

348 Scopus citations


CD4+ Tcell differentiation is regulated by specialized antigen-presenting cells. Dendritic cells (DCs) produce cytokines that promote naive CD4+ Tcell differentiation into T helper 1 (Th1), Th17, and inducible Tregulatory (iTreg) cells. However, the initiation of Th2 cell responses remains poorly understood, although it is likely that more than one mechanism might be involved. Here we have defined a specific DC subset that is involved in Th2 cell differentiation invivo in response to a protease allergen, as well as infection with Nippostrongylus brasiliensis. We have demonstrated that this subset is controlled by the transcription factor interferon regulatory factor 4 (IRF4), which is required for their differentiation and Th2 cell-inducing function. IRF4 is known to control Th2 cell differentiation and Th2 cell-associated suppressing function in Treg cells. Our finding suggests that IRF4 also plays a role in DCs where it controls the initiation of Th2 cell responses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)722-732
Number of pages11
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 17 2013
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Infectious Diseases


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