Int J Biol Sci 2020; 16(12):2072-2083. doi:10.7150/ijbs.43596

Research Paper

Elevated granulocytic myeloid-derived suppressor cells are closely related with elevation of Th17 cells in mice with experimental asthma

Fei Xue1,2*, Mengzhu Yu1,2*, Li Li1, Wenzhe Zhang1, Yongbin Ma1,3, Liyang Dong4, Wenqi Shan1,2, Yu Zheng1, Ting Wang1, Dingqi Feng1, Jianping Lv2✉, Xuefeng Wang1✉

1. Department of Central Laboratory, The Affiliated Hospital of Jiangsu University, Zhenjiang 212001, China
2. Department of Pediatrics, The Affiliated Hospital of Jiangsu University, Zhenjiang 212001, China
3. Department of Neurology Laboratory, Jintan Hospital, Jiangsu University, Jintan 213200, China
4. Department of Nuclear Medicine and Institute of Oncology, The Affiliated Hospital of Jiangsu University, Zhenjiang 212001, China
*These authors contributed equally to this work.

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Citation:
Xue F, Yu M, Li L, Zhang W, Ma Y, Dong L, Shan W, Zheng Y, Wang T, Feng D, Lv J, Wang X. Elevated granulocytic myeloid-derived suppressor cells are closely related with elevation of Th17 cells in mice with experimental asthma. Int J Biol Sci 2020; 16(12):2072-2083. doi:10.7150/ijbs.43596. Available from http://www.ijbs.com/v16p2072.htm

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Abstract

Asthma is a complex and heterogeneous inflammatory response characterized by various immune cells, including myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSCs) and CD4+ T-cell subsets. However, few studies on MDSC subsets and the association between MDSCs and CD4+ T-cell subsets in asthma are reported. In the present study, we detected CD4+ T cells and MDSC subsets and evaluated the relationship of these cells in mice with ovalbumin-induced asthma. We found that asthmatic mice showed severe airway inflammatory response and inflammatory cell infiltration in the lungs and bronchoalveolar lavage fluid. We also noted increased numbers of Th2, Th17, and MDSCs; decreased proportion of Th1 and Treg cells in the splenocytes and lungs; and increased expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines in splenocytes and lungs. Granulocytic MDSCs (G-MDSCs) and Th17 cells were closely related. Gemcitabine treatment reduced the G-MDSC level and the iNOS expression, alleviated the inflammatory response, and decreased the proportion and number of Th2 and Th17 cells in asthmatic mice. Besides the increase in Th2 and Th17 cells, the findings indicate that G-MDSC elevation plays a crucial role in asthmatic mice.

Keywords: granulocytic myeloid-derived suppressor, Th17 cells, experimental asthma