Abstract 694

Osteoclasts (OCs), the responsible cells for bone resorption, are derived from monocytic precursor cells, with the stimulation of macrophage colony-stimulating factor (M-CSF) and the receptor activator of nuclear factor κb ligand (RANKL). The formation and activity of OCs can be either promoted by activated T cell derived RANKL, IL-17, or suppressed by T cell derived IFN-γ, IL-10, and IL-4. On the other hand, OCs express MHC, and costimulatory molecules, secrete IL-10, TGF-β, TNF-α and IL-6 and can act as antigen presenting cells to activate T cells, which indicates that OCs can be considered as immune cells. However, the immune function of OCs is largely unknown, and whether activated T cells can regulate the immune function of OCs is also unclear. In this study, we investigated the effect of OCs on T cell responses, and the cross regulation between activated T cells and immune regulatory OCs. Results showed that autologous OCs could inhibit the proliferation of CD4+ T cells activated by allogeneic antigen, tetanus toxin, staphylococcal enterotoxin B, and anti-CD3/CD28 antibodies. The inhibitory rate range varied from 63% to 88%. To identify the mechanism of OC-mediated T cell suppression, we blocked or inhibited TGF-β, IL-10, (prostaglandin E2) PGE-2, and indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase (IDO) with neutralizing antibodies or specific inhibitors during the coculture. Results showed that only 1-methyl-DL-tryptophan (1-MT, an IDO inhibitor) could rescue the T cell proliferation, which suggested that OCs mediated the T cell suppression through IDO. To confirm this result, we knocked down IDO expression in OCs with siRNA and found that T cell proliferation was restored completely. As normal OCs didn't express IDO, next we investigated which molecules induced IDO expression in OCs, when cocultured with activated T cells. Results showed that blocking IFN-γ and CD40 ligand (CD40L) could inhibit IDO expression in OCs and rescue the T cell proliferation, and recombinant IFN-γ and soluble CD40L could induce IDO expression in OCs, synergistically. In conclusion, our study identified that OCs can function as immune regulatory cells to suppress T cell proliferation through IDO, which is induced by activated T cell derived IFN-γ and CD40L. This study provides new insight into the reciprocal interaction between OCs and T cells and may be helpful to develop novel therapeutic strategies for diseases involved in both bone and immune systems, such as bone-invasive tumors and autoimmune arthritis.


No relevant conflicts of interest to declare.

Author notes


Asterisk with author names denotes non-ASH members.