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Cell Mol Immunol. 2005 Dec;2(6):411-7.

Plasmacytoid dendritic cells act as the most competent cell type in linking antiviral innate and adaptive immune responses.

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Research Center of Biological Therapy, Beijing 302 Hospital, Beijing 100039, China.


Appropriate in vivo control of plasmacytoid dendritic cell (pDC) recruitment and activation is a fundamental requirement for defense against viral infection. During this process, a pivotal event that influences the outcome of viral infection is the production of high levels of type I interferon by pDCs. In particular, recent research findings showed that pDCs not only shape the nature of innate resistance, but are also responsible for the successful transition from innate to adaptive immunity for viral resistance. In addition, pDCs can differentiate into antigen presenting cells that may regulate tolerance to a given pathogen. Importantly, in a series of recent clinical studies, pDCs appeared to be defective in number and function in conditions of chronic viral diseases such as infected with HIV-1, HBV or HCV. pDC-associated clinical antiviral therapy is also emerging. This review describes research findings examining the functional and antiviral properties of in vivo pDC plasticity.

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