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Immunol Lett. 1999 Mar;66(1-3):111-6.

Subpopulations of peripheral blood dendritic cells show differential susceptibility to infection with a lymphotropic strain of HIV-1.

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Antigen Presentation Research Group, Imperial College School of Medicine at Northwick Park, Institute for Medical Research, Harrow, Middlesex, UK.


Blood dendritic cells (DC) express CD4 and are susceptible to HIV infection. By electron microscopy two morphologically distinct types of DC were identified in peripheral blood. Only one of these two types was susceptible to infection with a lymphotropic strain of HIV-1. By FACS two populations could be defined based on the expression of CD11c. The morphology of cultured FACS-purified CD11c negative DC was similar to that DC population shown to be susceptible to infection with the lymphotropic strain of HIV. Furthermore after several hours in culture CXCR4, the co-receptor for lymphotropic strains of HIV-1, was expressed at a significantly higher level on the CD11c negative DC than on the CD11c positive cells. This study suggests that there are subpopulations of DC that show differences in susceptibility to infection with some strains of HIV-1.

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