A role for the transcription factor Helios in human CD4+CD25+ regulatory T cells

Derese Getnet, Joseph F. Grosso, Monica V. Goldberg, Timothy J. Harris, Hung Rong Yen, Tullia C. Bruno, Nicholas M. Durham, Edward L. Hipkiss, Kristin J. Pyle, Satoshi Wada, Fan Pan, Drew M. Pardoll, Charles G. Drake*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article peer-review

185 Scopus citations


Relative upregulation of the Ikaros family transcription factor Helios in natural regulatory T cells (Tregs) has been reported by several groups. However, a role for Helios in regulatory T cells has not yet been described. Here, we show that Helios is upregulated in CD4+CD25+ regulatory T cells. Chromatin-immunoprecipitation (ChIP) experiments indicated that Helios binds to the FoxP3 promoter. These data were further corroborated by experiments showing that knocking-down Helios with siRNA oligonucleotides results in down-regulation of FoxP3. Functionally, we found that suppression of Helios message in CD4+CD25+ T cells significantly attenuates their suppressive function. Taken together, these data suggest that Helios may play an important role in regulatory T cell function and support the concept that Helios may be a novel target to manipulate Treg activity in a clinical setting.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1595-1600
Number of pages6
JournalMolecular Immunology
Issue number7-8
StatePublished - 04 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • FoxP3
  • Helios
  • Regulatory T cells


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