Immune Netw.  2003 Sep;3(3):169-175. 10.4110/in.2003.3.3.169.

Oral Tolerance: Not Simple But more Complex

  • 1Laboratory of Immunology, Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, College of Pharmacy, Seoul National University, Seoul, Korea.


The intestinal immune system can discriminate between harmful and unharmful antigens and do not provoke productive immunity to unharmful antigen. Thus oral administration of antigen is one of classical methods for inducing antigen-specific immune tolerance in the periphery. Furthermore, oral tolerance has been investigated for the treatment of autoimmune disorders in human clinical trials. However, the detail mechanism of oral tolerance and contributing factors are not defined clearly at this time. Recent studies demonstrate unique types of immune cell that suppressing immune response, such as regulatory T cell and tolerogenic dendritic cell. This article reviews the factors involved in oral tolerance and discusses our current understanding base on the recent literatures and our works.


Oral tolerance; antigen presenting cell; regulatory T cell; gut-associated lymphoid tissue
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