Julien Diana and Yannick Simoni of the "Immune Mechanisms in Type 1 Diabetes," Inserm/Université Paris Descartes, directed by Agnès Lehuen, have just published the results of their work on type 1 diabetes in the Nature Medicine journal.
The researchers reveal the role of the innate immune cells, especially the dendritic cells, that cause the activation of the killer T-lymphocytes whose action is directed against the p pancreatic cells. The results obtained in mice make it possible to consider new ways of regulating the auto-immune reaction generated by the innate immune cells.
These results show, for the first time, the important role played by innate immune cells in the sequence of events leading to the onset of Type 1 diabetes. Researchers continue to strive to understand how to regulate the auto-immune reaction produced by dendritic cells without compromising the innate immune system, an essential one in cases of infection. Several routes are being taken to attempt to regulate the production of the INF α alarm molecule that precedes activation of the killer T-cells, for example, by specifically targeting certain activation routes for the pDC dendritic cells.
"These therapeutic approaches are currently being tested in other auto-immune diseases such as lupus and psoriasis. Such innovative treatments could be useful in the prevention of Type 1 diabetes. It will first be necessary, however, to perform studies in diabetic and pre-diabetic patients to be able to better understand how the innate immune cells function, something that has not been studied until recently in auto-immune diabetes," concludes Agnès Lehuen.