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Immunobiology. 2009;214(7):562-75. doi: 10.1016/j.imbio.2008.11.003. Epub 2009 Mar 3.

C-type lectins and phagocytosis.

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Institute of Infectious Disease and Molecular Medicine, CLS, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Cape Town, Observatory, Cape Town 7925, South Africa.


To recognise and respond to pathogens, germ-line encoded pattern recognition receptors (PRRs) bind to conserved microbial structures and activate host defence systems, including microbial uptake by phagocytosis. Phagocytosis is a complex process that is instrumental in the control of extracellular pathogens, and this activity is mediated by several PRRs, including a number of C-type lectins. While some of these receptors have clearly been shown to mediate or regulate the uptake of pathogens, others are more contentious and are less well understood in terms of their phagocytic potential. Furthermore, very little is known about the underlying phagocytic mechanisms. Here, we review the phagocytic roles of the mannose receptor, Dectin-1, dendritic cell-specific ICAM grabbing non-integrin (DC-SIGN), DCL-1, mannose binding lectin and surfactant proteins A and D.

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