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Int Rev Immunol. 1990;6(2-3):89-101.

The surface of dendritic cells in the mouse as studied with monoclonal antibodies.

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Laboratory of Cellular Physiology and Immunology, Rockefeller University and Irvington Institute, New York, NY 10021.


A family of dendritic cells has been identified in situ and in vitro by microscopy and immunolabeling. The members of this family include the dendritic cells isolated from lymphoid organs, Langerhans cells [LC] of the epidermis, veiled cells in afferent lymph, and interdigitating cells [IDC] in the T-cell areas. Some common features to all members of the family are high levels of MHC class II antigens, a lack of most B and T cell markers, and an absence or low levels of macrophage/granulocyte antigens. This review summarizes the markers of mouse dendritic cells as assessed by a panel of monoclonal antibodies, and stresses a few recent findings. 1) In spleen, there are two populations of dendritic cells. More than 75% of isolated cells are 33D1+, NLDC145-, and J11d-, while the remainder have the reciprocal phenotype and thus share the NLDC145 antigen of IDC. Thymic dendritic cells, released by collagenase digestion, and epidermal LC also are 33D1-, NLDC145+, J11d+. 2) When epidermal LC are placed in culture, there are changes in cell function and phenotype. There is a decrease in Fc gamma receptors and the F4/80 macrophage antigen, an increase in class I and II MHC products and p55 IL-2 receptors, and persistence of the NLDC145 IDC antigen. The cultured LC thereby resembles the IDC. 3) A new antibody N418 shows that dendritic cells express the p150/90 member of the leukocyte beta 2 integrin family. Immunolabeling of tissue sections of spleen indicates that N418+ dendritic cells not only are present in the periarterial sheaths, the location of IDC, but also in "nests" at the periphery of the T area where 33D1 has been found. The peripheral collections interrupt the marginal zone of macrophages that separates white and red pulp, and places the dendritic cells in the path of T cells as they move through the white pulp. Therefore the members of the dendritic cell family have important markers in common, as well as differences that are associated with state of immunologic function and location.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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