Review: The function of regulatory T cells at the ocular surface. Ocul Surf 2017;15(4):652-659.Abstract.
Regulatory T cells (Tregs) are critical modulators of immune homeostasis. Tregs maintain peripheral tolerance to self-antigens, thereby preventing autoimmune disease. Furthermore, Tregs suppress excessive immune responses deleterious to the host. Recent research has deepened our understanding of how Tregs function at the ocular surface. This manuscript describes the classification, the immunosuppressive mechanisms, and the phenotypic plasticity of Tregs. We review the contribution of Tregs to ocular surface autoimmune disease, as well as the function of Tregs in allergy and infection at the ocular surface. Finally, we review the role of Tregs in promoting allotolerance in corneal transplantation.