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Recently, agonist antibodies to glucocorticoid-induced tumor necrosis factor receptor (GITR) (tumor necrosis factor receptor superfamily 18) have been shown to neutralize the suppressive activity of CD4+CD25+ regulatory T cells. It was anticipated that this would be the role of the physiological ligand. We have identified and expressed the gene for mouse GITR ligand and have confirmed that its interaction with GITR reverses suppression by CD4+CD25+ T cells. It also, however, provides a costimulatory signal for the antigen-driven proliferation of naïve T cells and polarized T helper 1 and T helper 2 clones. RT-PCR and mAb staining revealed mouse GITR ligand expression in dendritic cells, macrophages, and B cells. Expression was controlled by the transcription factor NF-1 and potentially by alternative splicing of mRNA destabilization sequences.

Original publication




Journal article


Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A

Publication Date





15059 - 15064


Alternative Splicing, Amino Acid Sequence, Animals, Antibodies, Monoclonal, Base Sequence, CD4 Antigens, CD4-Positive T-Lymphocytes, Carrier Proteins, Cell Division, Cell Line, Cloning, Molecular, DNA, Complementary, Dose-Response Relationship, Drug, Humans, Immunoblotting, Jurkat Cells, Ligands, Luciferases, Macrophages, Mice, Models, Genetic, Molecular Sequence Data, Neurofibromin 1, Plasmids, RNA, Messenger, Receptors, Interleukin-2, Recombinant Proteins, Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction, Sequence Homology, Amino Acid, T-Lymphocytes, Time Factors, Transcription, Genetic, Transfection, Tumor Necrosis Factors