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J Immunol. 2008 Mar 1;180(5):2894-902.

AIMP1/p43 protein induces the maturation of bone marrow-derived dendritic cells with T helper type 1-polarizing ability.

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School of Life Sciences and Biotechnology, Korea University, Seoul, Republic of Korea.


AIMP1 (ARS-interacting multifunctional protein 1), previously known as p43, was initially identified as a factor associated with a macromolecular tRNA synthetase complex. Recently, we demonstrated that AIMP1 is also secreted and acts as a novel pleiotropic cytokine. In this study, we investigated whether AIMP1 induces the activation and maturation of murine bone marrow-derived dendritic cells (DCs). AIMP1-treated DCs exhibited up-regulated expression of cell-surface molecules, including CD40, CD86, and MHC class II. Additionally, microarray analysis and RT-PCR determinations indicated that the expression of known DC maturation genes also increased significantly following treatment with AIMP1. Treatment of DCs with AIMP1 resulted in a significant increase in IL-12 production and Ag-presenting capability, and it also stimulated the proliferation of allogeneic T cells. Importantly, AIMP1-treated DCs induced activation of Ag-specific Th type 1 (Th1) cells in vitro and in vivo. AIMP1-stimulated DCs significantly enhanced the IFN-gamma production of cocultured CD4+ T cells. Immunization of mice with keyhole limpet hemocyanin-pulsed AIMP1 DCs efficiently led to Ag-specific Th1 cell responses, as determined by flow cytometry and ELISA. The addition of a neutralizing anti-IL-12 mAb to the cell cultures that had been treated with AIMP1 resulted in the decreased production of IFN-gamma, thereby indicating that AIMP1-stimulated DCs may enhance the Th1 response through increased production of IL-12 by APCs. Taken together, these results indicate that AIMP1 protein induces the maturation and activation of DCs, which skew the immune response toward a Th1 response.

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