Dendritic Cell Surface Molecules
Dendritic cells (DC) are specialist antigen presenting cells (APC) derived in common with other leukocytes from bone marrow stem cells.1,2 A myeloid derived precursor3 gives rise to immature circulating blood DC which enter the tissues and after interacting with antigen migrate to the T lymphocyte dependent areas of lymph nodes, where they deliver stimulatory signals to responding T lymphocytes. Recent studies suggest the growth and differentiation of myeloid DC is heavily influenced by cytokines, notably flt-3 ligand, SCF, GM-CSF, IL-4 and TNFα4–6. A unique DC precursor in blood can he distinguished from freshly isolated blood monocytes.7,8 However, considerable evidence suggests that monocytes exposed in vitro to certain cytokine combinations (notably including IL-4, which downregulates CD14) can acquire many, if not most DC characteristics.9 The DC series also includes a lymphoid precursor derived cell10 a subset of which, in the mouse, has an inhibiting effect on responding T lymphocytes. Lymphoid precursor cells have been described in man11,12 hut their function is unknown.
KeywordsDendritic Cell Myeloid Dendritic Cell Dendritic Cell Population Antigen Present Cell Function Thymic Dendritic Cell
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