Session Type: Abstract Submissions (ACR)
Background/Purpose Mucosal-associated invariant T (MAIT) cells contribute to protection against certain microorganism infections and play an important role in mucosal immunity. However, the role of MAIT cells remains enigmatic in autoimmune diseases. Here, we examined the level and function of MAIT cells in patients with rheumatic diseases.
Methods MAIT cell, cytokine and programmed death-1 (PD-1) levels were measured by flow cytometry.
Results Circulating MAIT cell levels were significantly reduced in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients. In particular, this MAIT cell deficiency was more prominent in CD8+ and double-negative T cell subsets, and significantly correlated with disease activity, such as SLE disease activity index (SLEDAI) and 28-joint disease activity score (DAS28). Interestingly, MAIT cell frequency was significantly correlated with natural killer T (NKT) cell frequency in SLE patients. Interferon-γ production in MAIT cells was impaired in SLE patients, but it was preserved in RA patients. In SLE patients, MAIT cells were poorly activated by α-galactosylceramide-stimulated NKT cells, thereby showing the dysfunction between MAIT cells and NKT cells. Notably, an elevated expression of PD-1 in MAIT cells and NKT cells was associated with SLE. In RA patients, MAIT cell levels were significantly higher in synovial fluid than in peripheral blood.
Conclusion Our study primarily demonstrates that MAIT cells are numerically and functionally deficient in SLE. In addition, we report a novel finding that this MAIT cell deficiency is associated with NKT cell deficiency and elevated PD-1 expression. These abnormalities possibly contribute to dysregulated mucosal immunity in SLE.
J. H. Kang,
Y. N. Cho,
H. M. Jin,
H. J. Jung,
S. J. Lee,
S. J. Kee,
Y. W. Park,
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ACR Meeting Abstracts - https://acrabstracts.org/abstract/mucosal-associated-invariant-t-cell-deficiency-in-systemic-lupus-erythematosus/