Regulatory T cells (Treg) have proven to be a powerful immunologic force in nearly every organ system and hold therapeutic potential for a wide range of diseases. Insights gained from non-transplant pathologies, such as infection, cancer, and autoimmunity, are now being translated to the field of solid organ transplantation, particularly for livers and kidneys. Recent insights from animal models of lung transplantation have established that Tregs play a vital role in suppressing rejection and facilitating tolerance of lung allografts, and such discoveries are being validated in human studies and preclinical trials. Given that long-term outcomes following lung transplantation remain profoundly limited by chronic rejection, Treg therapy holds the potential to significantly improve patient outcomes and should be aggressively investigated.
- T cells