Antigen Presentation at the Blood-Brain Barrier: A Role for Astrocytes?
The observation that astrocytes may function as antigen presenting cells (APCs) in vitro (Fontana et al., 1984) has had a significant impact on the development of research into immunological functions of glial cells and, probably, on the field of neuroimmunology as a whole. Moreover, it has paved the way for new approaches to the study of important central nervous system (CNS) pathologies where glial cells appear to be actively involved, including the CNS response to trauma, CNS repair and neuronal degeneration. Yet, an increasing number of recent studies serve to de-emphasize rather than to support a role for astrocytes as antigen presenting cells in vivo (e.g., Poltorak and Freed, 1989; Boyle and McGeer, 1990; Matsumoto et al., 1992b). In the following sections, arguments in favor and against such a role are presented, and special attention is paid to the question whether astrocytes may or may not be involved in antigen presentation at the blood-brain barrier (BBB).
KeywordsMajor Histocompatibility Complex Experimental Autoimmune Encephalomyelitis Major Histocompatibility Complex Class Experimental Allergic Encephalomyelitis Perivascular Cell
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.
- Abbas, A.K., Lichtman, A.H., and Pober, J.S., 1991, “Cellular and Molecular Immunology,” W.B. Saunders, Philadelphia.Google Scholar
- Ashwell, J.D., Fox, B.S., and Schwartz, R.H., 1988, T cell recognition of antigen and Ia molecules involves a trimolecular complex, in: “Processing and Presentation of Antigens”, B. Pernis, S.C. Silverstein, and H.J. Vogel, eds., Academic Press, New York.Google Scholar
- Butter, C., O’Neill, J.K., Baker, D., Gschmeissner, S.E., and Turk, J.L., 1991, An immunoelectron microscopical study of the expression of class II major histocompatibility complex during chronic relapsing experimental allergic encephalomyelitis in Biozzi AB/H mice, J. Neuroimmunol. 33: 37.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Graeber, M.B., Streit, W.J., and Kreutzberg, G.W., 1991, Toward an immunological definition of the blood-brain barrier: Significance of MHC class II positive perivascular cells, in: “Proceedings of the XIth International Congress of Neuropathology, Satellite Symposium on Demyelination, Mechanisms and Background,” T. Yonezawa, ed., Japanese Society for Neuropathology, Kyoto.Google Scholar
- Maehlen, J., Olsson, T., Zachau, A., Klareskog, L., and Kristensson, K., 1989, Local enhancement of major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I and II expression and cell infiltration in experimental allergic encephalomyelitis around axotomized motor neurons, J. Neuroimmunol. 23: 125.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Matsumoto, Y., and Fujiwara, M., 1986a, In situ detection of class I and II major histocompatibility complex antigens in the rat central nervous system during experimental allergic encephalomyelitis. An immunohistochemical study, J. Neuroimmunol. 12: 265.Google Scholar
- Matsumoto, Y., Ohmori, K., and Fujiwara, M., 1992b, Immune regulation by brain cells in the central nervous system: Microglia but not astrocytes present myelin basic protein to encephalitogenic T cells under in vivo-mimicking conditions, Immunol.: 76: 209.Google Scholar
- Meyermann, R., Lampert, P.W., Korr H., and Wekerle, H., 1987, The blood-brain barrier - a strict border to lymphoid cells?, in:“Stroke and Microcirculation,” J. Cervos-Navarro, and R. Ferszt, eds., Raven Press, New York.Google Scholar
- Paul, W.E., 1989, The immune system: An introduction, in: “Fundamental Immunology,” W.E. Paul, ed., Raven Press, New York.Google Scholar
- Peters, A., Palay, S.L., and Webster, H.deF., 1991, “The Fine Structure of the Nervous System. Neurons and Their Supporting Cells,” Oxford University Press, Oxford.Google Scholar
- Schlüter, D., Löhler, J., Deckert, M., Hof, H., and Schwendemann, G., 1991, Toxoplasma encephalitis of immunocompetent and nude mice: immunohistochemical characterisation of Toxoplasma antigen, infiltrates and major histocompatibility complex gene products, J. Neuroimmunol. 31:185.Google Scholar
- Sedgwick, J.D., Mößner, R., Schwender, S., and ter Meulen, V., 1991, Major histocompatibility complex-expressing nonhematopoietic astroglial cells prime only CD8+ T lymphocytes: Astroglial cells as perpetuators but not initiators of CD4+ T cell responses in the central nervous system, J. Exp. Med. 173: 1235.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Steinman, R.M., and Inaba, K., 1988, Antigen presentation by dendritic cells, in: “Processing and Presentation of Antigens,” B. Pernis, S.C. Silverstein, and H.J. Vogel, eds., Academic Press, New York.Google Scholar
- Wekerle, H., Sun, D., Oropeza-Wekerle, R.L., and Meyermann, R., 1987, Immune reactivity in the nervous system: modulation of T-lymphocyte activation by glial cells, J. Exp. BioL 132: 43.Google Scholar