Going Against the Flow

Science's STKE  16 Apr 2002:
Vol. 2002, Issue 128, pp. tw144
DOI: 10.1126/stke.2002.128.tw144


The mechanism of action of a drug already used for immunosuppression reveals a new level of regulation of lymphocyte. Mandala et al. show that the active form of the drug FTY720 becomes phosphorylated once administered and resembles sphingosine-1-phosphate, a lipid whose activation of cognate receptors has been implicated in modulating the immune response. The drug and lipid achieve immunosuppressive effects by inhibiting the circulation of lymphocytes in the body.

S. Mandala, R. Hajdu, J. Bergstrom, E. Quackenbush, J. Xie, J. Milligan, R. Thornton, G.-J. Shei, D. Card, C. A. Keohane, M. Rosenbach, J. Hale, C. L. Lynch, K. Rupprecht, W. Parsons, H. Rosen, Alteration of lymphocyte trafficking by sphingosine-1-phosphate receptor agonists. Science 296, 346-349 (2002). [Abstract] [Full Text]