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Eur J Immunol. 1995 Oct;25(10):2858-62.

Low-dose UVB radiation perturbs the functional expression of B7.1 and B7.2 co-stimulatory molecules on human Langerhans cells.

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Department of Dermatology, University of Freiburg, Germany.


In previous studies, we have shown that ultraviolet (UV) B radiation perturbs the APC function of Langerhans cells (LC) by interfering with as-yet unidentified co-stimulatory signals. Recently, B7.1 and B7.2 on APC were shown to deliver important co-stimulatory signals through interaction with their counter receptors CD28 and CTLA-4 on T cells. To determine whether UVB affects the functional expression of B7.1 or B7.2 on LC, B7.1 and B7.2 expression was studied on human LC by multiparameter flow cytometry. Little, if any, B7.1 or B7.2 was detected on LC freshly isolated from skin. However, following 48 h of tissue culture, expression of both B7.1 and B7.2 were markedly up-regulated. To test whether these molecules were functional, primary mixed epidermal cell leukocyte reactions (MECLR) were performed. Blocking monoclonal antibody (mAb) to B7.1 or B7.2 both inhibited the MECLR, with anti-B7.2 being much more effective than anti-B7.1. UVB radiation dose-dependently (100-200 J/m2) suppressed the culture-induced up-regulation of B7.1 and B7.2 on LC. Since LC exposed to the same UVB flux (UVB-LC) failed to stimulate alloreactive T cells in a MECLR, we questioned whether this was related to their inability to provide B7 co-stimulation. Indeed, when effective B7-CD28 signaling was ascertained by adding submitogenic doses of exogenous anti-CD28 mAb to UVB-LC, the proliferative response of alloreactive T cells was restored. We conclude that the suppressive effects of low-dose UVB radiation on the APC function of LC are, at least in part, due to an inhibition of functional B7.1 and B7.2 expression.

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