Induction of IL-10-producing type 2 innate lymphoid cells by allergen immunotherapy is associated with clinical response.
The role of innate immune cells in allergen immunotherapy that confers immune tolerance to the sensitizing allergen is unclear. Here, we report a role of interleukin-10-producing type 2 innate lymphoid cells (IL-10(+) ILC2s) in modulating grass-pollen allergy. We demonstrate that KLRG1(+) but not KLRG1(-) ILC2 produced IL-10 upon activation with IL-33 and retinoic acid. These cells attenuated Th responses and maintained epithelial cell integrity. IL-10(+) KLRG1(+) ILC2s were lower in patients with grass-pollen allergy when compared to healthy subjects. In a prospective, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial, we demonstrated that the competence of ILC2 to produce IL-10 was restored in patients who received grass-pollen sublingual immunotherapy. The underpinning mechanisms were associated with the modification of retinol metabolic pathway, cytokine-cytokine receptor interaction, and JAK-STAT signaling pathways in the ILCs. Altogether, our findings underscore the contribution of IL-10(+) ILC2s in the disease-modifying effect by allergen immunotherapy.