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Clin Exp Immunol. 2004 Feb;135(2):181-5.

Phagocytosis of opsonized apoptotic cells: roles for 'old-fashioned' receptors for antibody and complement.

Author information

1
MRC Centre for Inflammation Research, University of Edinburgh Medical School, Edinburgh, UK. s.hart@ed.ac.uk

Abstract

Efficient phagocytic clearance of apoptotic cells is crucial in many biological processes. A bewildering array of phagocyte receptors have been implicated in apoptotic cell clearance, but there is little convincing evidence that they act directly as apoptotic cell receptors. Alternatively, apoptotic cells may become opsonized, whereby naturally occurring soluble factors (opsonins) bind to the cell surface and initiate phagocytosis. Evidence is accumulating that antibodies and complement proteins opsonize apoptotic cells, leading to phagocytosis mediated by well-defined 'old-fashioned' receptors for immunoglobulin-Fc and complement. In this review we summarize the evidence that opsonization is necessary for high capacity clearance of apoptotic cells, which would render putative direct apoptotic cell receptors redundant.

PMID:
14738443
PMCID:
PMC1808943
DOI:
10.1111/j.1365-2249.2003.02330.x
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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