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Endocrine self and gut non-self intersect in the pancreatic lymph nodes.

Section on Immunology and Immunogenetics, Joslin Diabetes Center, and Department of Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, One Joslin Place, Boston, MA 02215, USA.
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (Impact Factor: 9.81). 01/2006; 102(49):17729-33. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0509006102
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The autoimmune cascade that culminates in diabetes initiates within pancreatic lymph nodes (PLNs). Here, we show that developmentally controlled lymphogenesis establishes a preferential trafficking route from the gut to the PLN, where T cells can be activated by antigens drained from the peritoneum and the gastrointestinal tract. Furthermore, intestinal stress modifies the presentation of pancreatic self-antigens in PLNs. The convergence of endocrine and intestinal contents within PLNs has significant implications for type 1 diabetes and may help to explain the link between autoimmune pathogenesis and environmental provocation.

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