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J Immunol. 2002 Sep 1;169(5):2264-73.

Granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor induces an expression program in neonatal microglia that primes them for antigen presentation.

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  • 1Department of Cancer Immunology and AIDS, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Department of Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02115, USA.


Neonatal microglial cells respond to GM-CSF and M-CSF by acquiring different morphologies and phenotypes. To investigate the extent and consequences of this process, a global gene expression analysis was performed, with significant changes in transcript levels confirmed by biochemical analyses. Primary murine microglial cells underwent substantial expression reprogramming after treatment with GM-CSF or M-CSF with many differentially expressed transcripts important in innate and adaptive immunity. In particular, many gene products involved in Ag presentation were induced by GM-CSF, but not M-CSF, thus potentially priming relatively quiescent microglia cells for Ag presentation. This function of GM-CSF is distinct from its primary function in cell proliferation and survival.

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