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MSCs Induce Tregs via Epigenetic Conversion of Tcons

Regulatory T cells (Treg) have been increasingly recognized for their application in the treatment of chronic inflammatory diseases; however, their scarcity requires in vitro expansion to obtain clinically relevant cell numbers. While mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) have been suggested to recruit Treg in vitro, we still lack a full understanding of the underlying mechanisms. Now, a new STEM CELLS study from the laboratory of Rita Isabel Azevedo (Universidade de Lisboa, Lisbon, Portugal) demonstrates for the first time that MSCs can induce functional Tregs through epigenetic modification of purified human conventional CD4 T cells (Tcons) in vitro. Overall, this interesting new study may promote the application of MSC‐induced Tregs as a cellular therapy in clinical settings where immune tolerance is compromised.