Follicular Dendritic Cells: Antigen Retention, B Cell Activation, and Cytokine Production
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Follicular dendritic cells (FDC) are located in dynamic microenvironments that are essential for generating effective and complete humoral responses. These anatomical locations present features of either a primary follicular nodule or a secondary structure known as the germinal center. During primary and secondary exposure to antigen, germinal centers develop within primary follicles according to a set time course (Fig. 1; Coico et al. 1983 ; Tew et al. 1992 ) . The outcome of the complicated cellular interactions occurring in germinal centers is an increased frequency of antigen-experienced (i.e., memory) circulating B cells and preplasma cells that will finish their differentiation process elsewhere. The humoral response also matures during the germinal center reaction through the mechanisms of class switching, somatic mutation, and clonal selection (reviewed in Kosco and Gray 1992 ; Maclennan 1994).
KeywordsGerminal Center Tetanus Toxoid Follicular Dendritic Cell Primary Immunization Popliteal Lymph Node
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