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J Leukoc Biol. 2019 Jan;105(1):37-48. doi: 10.1002/JLB.4RI0518-195R. Epub 2018 Sep 14.

Diversity and environmental adaptation of phagocytic cell metabolism.

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Cancer & Inflammation Program, National Cancer Institute, Frederick, Maryland, USA.
Division of Infection & Immunity, School of Medicine, Cardiff University, Heath Park, UK.


Phagocytes are cells of the immune system that play important roles in phagocytosis, respiratory burst and degranulation-key components of innate immunity and response to infection. This diverse group of cells includes monocytes, macrophages, dendritic cells, neutrophils, eosinophils, and basophils-heterogeneous cell populations possessing cell and tissue-specific functions of which cellular metabolism comprises a critical underpinning. Core functions of phagocytic cells are diverse and sensitive to alterations in environmental- and tissue-specific nutrients and growth factors. As phagocytic cells adapt to these extracellular cues, cellular processes are altered and may contribute to pathogenesis. The considerable degree of functional heterogeneity among monocyte, neutrophil, and other phagocytic cell populations necessitates diverse metabolism. As we review our current understanding of metabolism in phagocytic cells, gaps are focused on to highlight the need for additional studies that hopefully enable improved cell-based strategies for counteracting cancer and other diseases.


glycolysis; niche diversity; oxidative phosphorylation; phagocyte metabolism

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