That was a very good day, says Kemper. IL-10 is the classic substance that suppresses the action and proliferation of other immune cells.
The investigators next want to study how CD46 triggers production of IL-10 and to better define the population of cells that give rise to Tr1 cells. They also want to explore how viruses, including those that cause measles, meningitis and herpes, interact with CD46.
Its tempting to think that these pathogens dock with CD46 because it causes some cells to produce IL-10, which would suppress the action of nearby immune cells and help the pathogen survive, says Kemper. We can investigate such questions because we can now grow these cells in the laboratory.