Heme oxygenase-1 protects regulatory T cells from hypoxia-induced cellular stress in an experimental mouse brain tumor model

Mahua Dey, Alan L. Chang, Derek A. Wainwright, Atique U. Ahmed, Yu Han, Irina V. Balyasnikova, Maciej S. Lesniak*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

11 Scopus citations


Two characteristic features of malignant gliomas (MG) are the presence of hypoxia and accumulation of regulatory T cells (Tregs). Heme-oxygenase-1 (HO1) is a cytoprotective enzyme expressed in high level by Tregs in glioma. In this study, we show that higher HO1 expression in Tregs is associated with increased survival under hypoxic conditions and that HO1 inhibitor, tin protoporphyrin (SnPP), abrogates the survival benefits. Moreover, SnPP preferentially eliminates Tregs and treatment with SnPP of tumor bearing mice significantly increases survival (23 to 31. days (p<. 0.05)). Thus HO1 inhibition provides another alternative way of therapeutically targeting Tregs in MG.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)33-42
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Neuroimmunology
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Jan 15 2014



  • Glioma
  • Heme oxygenase 1
  • Hypoxia
  • Immunization
  • Regulatory T cells
  • Tin protoporphyrin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology

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