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Resveratrol: A potential complementary therapy for organ transplantation


In this study, researchers from The Catholic University of Korea St. Mary’s Hospital evaluated the immunosuppressive effects of resveratrol — that is, it’s ability to decrease TH17 responses in tacrolimus-based immunosuppression. The results of their study were published in the journal BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine.

  • The researchers previously reported that tacrolimus (Tac) does not reduce T helper 17 cells (Th17) response during kidney transplantation so they decided to investigate if resveratrol can.
  • Under Tac-treatment conditions, they evaluated the effects of resveratrol on CD4+ T cell differentiation to Th17 cells in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs), and on the proliferation of CD4+ T cells co-cultured with human renal proximal tubular epithelial cells (HRPTEpiCs).
  • They also used a murine skin transplant model to test the effects of resveratrol on Th17 cells.
  • The researchers reported that in PBMCs, the combination of Tac and resveratrol suppressed Th17 immune response.
  • In the co-culture study, the same combination significantly decreased HRPTEpiC-induced T cell proliferation compared with Tac treatment alone.
  • Resveratrol treatment in the Jurkat cell also induced AMP-activated protein kinase expression but suppressed mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) expression. This suggests that resveratrol blocks the Th17 pathway.
  • In the murine skin transplant model, the combination of Tac and resveratrol significantly prolonged skin graft survival and suppressed Th17 cells.

Based on these results, the researchers concluded that resveratrol provides additional immunosuppressive effects to Tac by suppressing effector CD4+ T cells, especially Th17 cells, in a transplantation setting.

Read the full study at this link.

Journal Reference:

Doh KC, Kim BM, Kim KW, Chung BH, Yang CW. EFFECTS OF RESVERATROL ON TH17 CELL-RELATED IMMUNE RESPONSES UNDER TACROLIMUS-BASED IMMUNOSUPPRESSION. BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine. 04 March 2019;19(1). DOI: 10.1186/s12906-019-2464-1



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