Shaping the diversity of Th2 cell responses in epithelial tissues and its potential for allergy treatment

Matthias, J. and Zielinski, C.E. (2019). Eur J Immunol 49, 1321-1333.

DOI: 10.1002/eji.201848011(link is external)


Th2 cells have evolved to protect from large helminth infections and to exert tissue protective functions in response to nonmicrobial noxious stimuli. The initiation, maintenance, and execution of these functions depend on the integration of diverse polarizing cues by cellular sensors and molecular programs as well as the collaboration with cells that are coopted for signal exchange. The complexity of input signals and cellular collaboration generates tissue specific Th2 cell heterogeneity and specialization. In this review, we aim to discuss the advances and recent breakthroughs in our understanding of Th2 cell responses and highlight developmental and functional differences among T cells within the diversifying field of type 2 immunity. We will focus on factors provided by the tissue microenvironment and highlight factors with potential implications for the pathogenesis of allergic skin and lung diseases. Especially new insights into the role of immunometabolism, the microbiota and ionic signals enhance the complexity of Th2 cell regulation and warrant a critical evaluation. Finally, we will discuss how this ensemble of established knowledge and recent breakthroughs about Th2 immunobiology advance our understanding of the pathogenesis of allergic diseases and how this could be exploited for future immunotherapies.