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Human colonic intra-epithelial lymphocytes (IEL) suppress the proliferation of autologous lamina propria lymphocytes, but not autologous peripheral blood mononuclear cells, when stimulated with phytohaemagglutinin. This suppressor function is mediated by a CD8-dependent soluble factor and is not related to the expression of the gamma delta T cell receptor. These findings may be relevant to the induction of mucosal tolerance. However, there is no defect in suppressor activity of colonic IEL in inflammatory bowel disease.


Journal article


Clin Exp Immunol

Publication Date





498 - 503


Adult, Aged, Aged, 80 and over, Colon, Epithelial Cells, Female, Humans, Inflammatory Bowel Diseases, Intestinal Mucosa, Lymphocyte Activation, Lymphocyte Subsets, Lymphocytes, Male, Middle Aged, T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory