B7-H3 Promotes Pathogenesis of Autoimmune Disease and Inflammation by Regulating the Activity of Different T Cell Subsets

Luo L, Zhu G, Xu H, Yao S, Zhou G, Zhu Y, Tamada K, Huang L, Flies AD, Broadwater M, Ruff W, van Deursen JM, Melero I, Zhu Z, Chen L. PLoS One. 2015 Jun 11;10(6):e0130126. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0130126. PMID: 26065426

B7-H3 is a cell surface molecule in the immunoglobulin superfamily that is frequently upregulated in response to autoantigens and pathogens during host T cell immune responses. However, B7-H3’s role in the differential regulation of T cell subsets remains largely unknown. Therefore, we constructed a new B7-H3 deficient mouse strain (B7-H3 KO) and evaluated the functions of B7-H3 in the regulation of Th1, Th2, and Th17 subsets in experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), experimental asthma, and collagen-induced arthritis (CIA); these mouse models were used to predict human immune responses in multiple sclerosis, asthma, and rheumatoid arthritis, respectively. Here, we demonstrate that B7-H3 KO mice have significantly less inflammation, decreased pathogenesis, and limited disease progression in both EAE and CIA mouse models when compared with littermates; these results were accompanied by a decrease in IFN-γ and IL-17 production. In sharp contrast, B7-H3 KO mice developed severe ovalbumin (OVA)-induced asthma with characteristic infiltrations of eosinophils in the lung, increased IL-5 and IL-13 in lavage fluid, and elevated IgE anti-OVA antibodies in the blood. Our results suggest B7-H3 has a costimulatory function on Th1/Th17 but a coinhibitory function on Th2 responses. Our studies reveal that B7-H3 could affect different T cell subsets which have important implications for regulating pathogenesis and disease progression in human autoimmune disease.