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Microbes Infect. 2000 Mar;2(3):279-88.

Macrophage lectins in host defence.

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Sir William Dunn School of Pathology, South Parks Road, Oxford, UK.


Macrophage lectins contribute to host defence by a variety of mechanisms. The best characterised, mannose receptor (MR) and complement receptor three (CR3), are both able to mediate phagocytosis of pathogenic microbes and induce intracellular killing mechanisms. The regulation of the effector functions induced via MR is complex, and may involve both host and microbial factors. Therefore, MR is likely to play a dynamic role in the response to infection; it may act as a classical pattern recognition receptor in phagocytosis, whereas other poorly characterised factors may make a more decisive contribution to its function in physiologic settings. In contrast, the lectin site of CR3 appears to lack host-derived ligands and may be a true pattern recognition receptor. Further studies are required to evaluate the roles of other macrophage lectins in recognition of and responses to microbes.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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