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Allergen specific Treg upregulated by lung-stage schistosome infection alleviates allergic airway inflammation via inhibiting IgE secretion

By Zhi dan Li, Wei Zhang, fang Luo, jian Li, Wen bin Yang, Bing kuan Zhu, Qun feng Wu, Xiao ling Wang, Cheng song Sun, Yu xiang Xie, Bin Xu, Zhao jun Wang, Feng Qian, Yan min Wan, Qing Li

Posted 14 Apr 2020
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/2020.04.14.040998

Schistosome infection showed protective effects against allergic airway inflammation (AAI). However,controversial findings exist especially regarding the timing of helminth infection and the underlying mechanisms. Moreover, most previous studies focused on understanding the preventive effect of schistosome infection on asthma (infection before allergen sensitization), while its therapeutic effects (infection after allergen sensitization) were rarely investigated. In this study, we investigated the therapeutic effects of schistosome infection on AAI using a mouse model of OVA induced asthma. To explore how the timing of schistosome infection influences its therapeutic effect, the mice were percutaneously infected with cercaria of Schistosoma japonicum at either 1 day before OVA induced asthma attack (infection at lung-stage during AAI) or 14 days before OVA induced asthma attack (infection at post lung-stage during AAI). We found that lung-stage schistosome infection significantly ameliorated OVA-induced AAI, whereas post lung-stage infection showed no therapeutic effect. Mechanistically, the lung-stage schistosome infection significantly upregulated the frequency of Treg, especially OVA specific Treg, in lung tissue, which negatively correlated with the level of OVA specific IgE. Depletion of Treg in vivo counteracted the therapeutic effect. Furthermore, transcriptomic analysis of lung tissue showed that lung-stage schistosome infection during AAI shaped the microenvironment to favor Treg induction. In conclusion, our data showed that lung-stage schistosome infection could relieve OVA induced asthma in a mouse model. The therapeutic effect was mediated by the upregulated OVA specific Treg which suppressed IgE production and Th2 cytokine secretion. Our results may facilitate the discovery of a new therapy for AAI. ### Competing Interest Statement

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