The effect of MSCs on cytokine production by CD4+ T cells. Control groups were CD4+ DBA/1 T cells stimulated with CD3/CD28 beads. DBA/1 (syngeneic), FVB (partially mismatched) or BALB/c (fully mismatched) MSCs were co-cultured with DBA/1 CD4+ T cells at a ratio of either 1:10 or 1:1. A, Co-culture with MSCs decreased TNFα secretion compared to controls independently of the genetic background of the MSC, *P <0.05 (2-way ANOVA). B, BALB/c MSCs increased IFNγ production compared to controls at the ratio of 1:1, *P <0.05 (2-way ANOVA). C, DBA/1 MSCs augmented IL-4 production by CD4+ T cells at both ratios. This was also seen with FVB and BALB/c MSCs at the ratio of 1:1, **P <0.01 (2-way ANOVA). D, With the exception of FVB MSCs at a ratio of 1:10, the addition of MSCs resulted in an increase in IL-10 production, *P <0.05 (2-way ANOVA). E, IFNγ:IL-4 was taken to represent Th1:Th2 cytokine production by stimulated T cells. Co-culture with DBA/1 or FVB MSCs (1:1) significantly suppressed this ratio compared to controls, **P <0.01 (2-way ANOVA). This was not seen when T cells were co-cultured with BALB/c MSCs. The Th1:Th2 ratio of T cells co-cultured with BALB/c MSCs was significantly higher than either the syngeneic or partially mismatched MSC groups, *P <0.05 (2-way ANOVA). Throughout n = 3, data represents mean ± standard deviation. ANOVA, analysis of variance; IFNγ, interferon gamma; IL-10, interleukin 10; IL-4, interleukin 4; MSC, mesenchymal stem cells; n, number; Th, T helper cell; TNFα, tumor necrosis factor alpha.
Sullivan et al. Arthritis Research & Therapy 2012 14:R167 doi:10.1186/ar3916