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Nat Rev Immunol. 2010 Jun;10(6):415-26. doi: 10.1038/nri2778.

Securing the immune tightrope: mononuclear phagocytes in the intestinal lamina propria.

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Gastroenterology and Hepatology Institute, Tel Aviv-Sourasky Medical Center, Tel Aviv, Israel.


The intestinal landscape comprises the host's own tissue and immune cells, as well as a diverse intestinal microbiota. Intricate regulatory mechanisms have evolved to maintain peaceful coexistence at this site, the breakdown of which can result in devastating inflammatory bowel diseases (IBDs). Mononuclear phagocytes promote both innate and adaptive immune responses in the gut and, as such, are essential for the maintenance of intestinal homeostasis. Here, we review the origins and functions of the mononuclear phagocytes found in the intestinal lamina propria, highlighting the problems that have arisen from their classification. Understanding these cells in their physiological context will be important for developing new therapies for IBDs.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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