Dichloroacetate induces regulatory T-cell differentiation and suppresses Th17-cell differentiation by pyruvate dehydrogenase kinase-independent mechanism


Recently, there has been a growing interest in the mechanism of action of dichloroacetate (DCA) for T-cell differentiation; however, this mechanism has not been elucidated in detail. Therefore, this study aimed to investigate the mechanism of action of DCA for Treg and Th17 differentiation with pyruvate dehydrogenase kinase (PDHK) inhibitor (AZD7545) and PDHK knockdown.


Inhibitory activity of DCA and AZD7545 against recombinant PDHK and intracellular PDH phosphorylation was measured. The effects of DCA and AZD7545 on T-cell differentiation were assessed by analysing Foxp3+ T-cell populations for Treg differentiation and IL-17A production for Th17 differentiation. For reactive oxygen species (ROS) production, DCFDA was used as an indicator.


Dichloroacetate and AZD7545 inhibited PDHK activity of recombinant PDHK and intracellular PDH phosphorylation. DCA was capable of inducing Treg differentiation and suppressing Th17 differentiation. The effects of DCA were independent of PDHK because neither AZD7545 nor knockdown of PDHK1 or PDHK3 affected T-cell differentiation. DCA was determined to be capable of inducing ROS production, and the effects of DCA on T-cell differentiation were shown to be dependent on ROS production.


Dichloroacetate possesses Treg induction and Th17 suppression, which is independent of PDHK and dependent on ROS production.

Related Products

Cat.No. Product Name Information Publications Customer Product Validation
S7517 AZD7545 AZD7545 is a potent PDHK inhibitor with IC50 of 36.8 nM and 6.4 nM for PDHK1 and PDHK2, respectively. It failed to inhibit PDHK4 at higher concentrations(>10 nM), AZD7545 stimulates PDHK4 activity. (4) (2)

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