St Paul M, Paolucci S and Sharif S. J Interferon Cytokine Res. 32:12 (2012):592-598.
Toll-like receptors (TLRs) play an important role in the induction of host responses to pathogens. Interactions between TLRs and their ligands result in the production of cytokines that modulate the adaptive immune response through polarizing CD4+ T cells into either T-helper (T(H))1 or T(H)2 phenotypes. In this regard, TLR2 and TLR5 ligands have been shown to induce responses in mammals that are biased toward T(H)1 or T(H)2 phenotypes. However, whether a similar phenomenon occurs in chickens remains to be elucidated. To this end, chicken splenocytes were stimulated with the TLR2 ligand Pam3CSK4 and the TLR5 ligand flagellin, and the relative expression of several cytokines and transcription factors was quantified at 1, 3, 8, and 18 h poststimulation. The results suggest that both TLR ligands induce a mixed T(H)1– and T(H)2-like response, as characterized by the upregulation of both the T(H)1-associated cytokine interferon-γ and the T(H)1-inducing cytokine interleukin (IL)-12, in addition to the T(H)2-associated cytokine IL-4, and in the case of flagellin, IL-13 as well. Future studies may be aimed at assessing the adjuvant potential of these ligands.