The transcriptional factors Thpok and LRF are redundantly necessary for helper T cell differentiation.

Carpenter A, Grainger JR, Xiong Y, Chu HH, Wang L, Naik S, Dos Santos L, Wei L, Jenkins MK, O’Shea J, Belkaid Y, Bosselut R. The transcriptional factors Thpok and LRF are redundantly necessary for helper T cell differentiation. Immunity. 37(4):622-33 Oct, 2012

T helper (Th) cells are critical for defenses against infection and recognize peptides bound to class II major histocompatibility complex (MHC II) molecules. Although transcription factorshave been identified that direct Th cells into specific effector fates, whether a “master” regulator controls the developmental program common to all Th cells remains unclear. Here, we showed that the two transcription factors Thpok and LRF share this function.

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Preserving immunogenicity of lethally irradiated viral and bacterial vaccine epitopes using a radioprotective Mn(2+)-peptide complex from Deinococcus.

Gaidamakova EK, Myles IA, McDaniel DP, Fowler CJ, Valdez PA, Naik S, Gayen M, Gupta P, Sharma A, Glass PJ, Maheshwari RK, Datta SK, Daly MJ. Preserving immunogenicity of lethally irradiated viral and bacterial vaccine epitopes using a radioprotective Mn(2+)-peptide complex from Deinococcus. Cell Host Microbe. 12(1):117-24 Jul, 2012

We demonstrate the use of a reconstituted manganous peptide complex from the radiation-resistant bacterium Deinococcus radiodurans to protect protein epitopes from radiation-induced damage and uncouple it from genome damage and organism killing.

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Compartmentalized control of skin immunity by resident commensals.

Naik S, Bouladoux N, Wilhelm C, Molloy MJ, Salcedo R, Kastenmuller W, Deming C, Quinones M, Koo L, Conlan S, Spencer S, Hall JA, Dzutsev A, Kong H, Campbell DJ, Trinchieri G, Segre JA, Belkaid Y. Compartmentalized control of skin immunity by resident commensals. Science. 337(6098):1115-9 Jul, 2012

Intestinal commensal bacteria induce protective and regulatory responses that maintain host-microbial mutualism. However, the contribution of tissue-resident commensals to immunity and inflammation at other barrier sites has not been addressed. We found that in mice, the skin microbiota have an autonomous role in controlling the local inflammatory milieu and tuning resident T lymphocyte function. Protective immunity to a cutaneous pathogen was found to be critically dependent on the skin microbiota but not the gut microbiota. Furthermore, skin commensals tuned the function of local T cells in a manner dependent on signaling downstream of the interleukin-1 receptor. These findings underscore the importance of the microbiota as a distinctive feature of tissue compartmentalization, and provide insight into mechanisms of immune system regulation by resident commensal niches in health and disease

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GATA3 controls Foxp3⁺ regulatory T cell fate during inflammation in mice.

Wohlfert EA, Grainger JR, Bouladoux N, Konkel JE, Oldenhove G, Ribeiro CH, Hall JA, Yagi R, Naik S, Bhairavabhotla R, Paul WE, Bosselut R, Wei G, Zhao K, Oukka M, Zhu J, Belkaid Y. GATA3 controls Foxp3⁺ regulatory T cell fate during inflammation in mice. J Clin Invest. 121(11):4503-15 Nov, 2011

Our data indicate that GATA3 limits Treg polarization toward an effector T cell phenotype and acquisition of effector cytokines in inflamed tissues. Overall, our work reveals what we believe to be a new facet in the complex role of GATA3 in T cells and highlights what may be a fundamental role in controlling Treg physiology during inflammation.

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Essential Role for Retinoic acid in promotion of CD4+ T cell responses via retinoic receptor alpha

Hall JA, Cannons JL, Grainger JR, Dos Santos LM, Hand TW, Naik S, Wohlfert EA, Chou DB, Oldenhove G, Robinson M, Grigg ME, Kastenmayer R, Schwartzberg PL, Belkaid Y. Essential Role for Retinoic acid in promotion of CD4+ T cell responses via retinoic receptor alpha. Immunity. 34(3):435-47 March, 2011

Vitamin A and its metabolite, retinoic acid (RA) are implicated in the regulation of immune homeostasis via the peripheral induction of regulatory T cells. Here we showed RA was also required to elicit proinflammatory CD4+ helper T cell responses to infection and mucosal vaccination.

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