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Immunohistochemical characterization and tissue distribution of regulatory T-lymphocyte in Sjogren syndrome

Grant number: 15/22586-2
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): December 01, 2015
Effective date (End): November 30, 2016
Field of knowledge:Health Sciences - Dentistry
Principal researcher:Jorge Esquiche León
Grantee:Lucas Ribeiro Teixeira
Home Institution: Faculdade de Odontologia de Ribeirão Preto (FORP). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Ribeirão Preto , SP, Brazil


Sjogren's syndrome (SS) is an autoimmune disease that primarily affects the salivary and lacrymal glands, causing dysfunction in these organs, which trigger signs and symptoms such as xerophthalmia (dry eyes) and xerostomia (dry mouth). The SS often affects women (9: 1), between the fourth and fifth decade of life. Of relevance to dentistry, due to xerostomia, patients with SS have a high frequency of candidiasis, decay, dysphagia and oral ulcerations. The diagnostic criteria recommend is a biopsy of the minor salivary glands (MSGs) of the lower lip, in which can be observed multifocal lymphocytic infiltrates. Interestingly, the immunological mechanisms in MSGs are not well known. Within this lymphocyte population, some studies have shown the presence of regulatory T-lymphocytes (Tregs), which has an immunosuppressive profile, regulating functions of cytotoxic lymphocytes, macrophages and dendritic cells. However, most of these studies show the lack of a detailed analysis of the location and tissue distribution of Tregs in SS. Research in this area, especially emphasizing the interrelationship of Tregs with lymphocytic foci and glandular parenchyma, are necessary to clarify the immunological mechanisms of this lymphocyte subpopulation, to establish immunotherapeutic approaches that can improve the quality of life of SS patients. The current study aims to analyze in detail the infiltration of Tregs (CD4+, CD25+ and FOXP3+) in biopsies of MSGs (n= 20) diagnosed with SS through immunohistochemical analysis. (AU)

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