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Sci. Signal., 27 July 2010
Vol. 3, Issue 132, p. pe24
[DOI: 10.1126/scisignal.3132pe24]

PERSPECTIVES

Inhibiting the Inhibitor of the Inhibitor: Blocking PKC-{theta} to Enhance Regulatory T Cell Function

Kole T. Roybal1 and Christoph Wülfing1,2*

1 Department of Immunology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX 75390, USA.
2 Department of Cell Biology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX 75390, USA.

Abstract: Protein kinase C {theta} (PKC-{theta}), one of many PKC isoforms expressed in T cells, is important for the activation of mature effector T cells. During T cell activation, PKC-{theta} is recruited to the interface between the T cell and the activating cellular interaction partner, the antigen-presenting cell or a synthetic substitute thereof. New evidence establishes that PKC-{theta} function differs in regulatory T cells, a T cell subset that suppresses the function of effector T cells. In regulatory T cells, PKC-{theta} inhibits their function and, intriguingly, is sequestered from the activating cellular interface. This finding raises several questions of general interest. Does PKC-{theta} function overlap with that of other PKC family members? What are the functionally critical distinctions in the similar signaling systems of effector and regulatory T cells? Does the divergent localization of PKC-{theta} in regulatory T cells drive function?

* Corresponding author. E-mail: christoph.wuelfing{at}utsouthwestern.edu

Citation: K. T. Roybal, C. Wülfing, Inhibiting the Inhibitor of the Inhibitor: Blocking PKC-{theta} to Enhance Regulatory T Cell Function. Sci. Signal. 3, pe24 (2010).

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