Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Microbiology and Immunology


The immune system is a group of structures and processes that protect us from disease. To function properly it must recognize a wide variety of pathogens such as viruses and bacteria. T cells play a crucial role in an immune response; however, an overactive immune response can lead to autoimmune diseases, therefore it is important that the immune system has the ability to negatively regulate an immune response. In the periphery, regulatory T cells (CD4+CD25+Foxp3+) are involved in the maintenance of self-tolerance and immune homeostasis. Mechanisms involved in the induction of iTregs from naïve CD4+ T cells include cytokine signaling and epigenetic modifications that control gene expression. Histone modifications H3K4me3 and H3K9ac promote gene expression in iTregs and alterations in these modifications are mediated by TGF-β signaling. Cytokines such as interleukin 3 (IL-3) also increase the expression of CD25 and Foxp3; both of which are required for iTreg differentiation and function.

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Creative Commons License
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