[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The C-type lectin receptor blood dendritic cell Ag 2 (BDCA2) is expressed exclusively on human plasmacytoid DCs (pDCs) and plays a role in Ag capture, internalization, and presentation to T cells. We used transgenic mice that express human BDCA2 and anti-BDCA2 mAbs to deliver Ags directly to BDCA2 on pDCs in vivo. Targeting Ag to pDCs in this manner resulted in significant suppression of Ag-specific CD4(+) T cell and Ab responses upon secondary exposure to Ag in the presence of adjuvant. Suppression of Ab responses required both a decrease in effector CD4(+) T cells and preservation of Foxp3(+) regulatory T cells (Tregs). Reduction in Treg numbers following Ag delivery to BDCA2 restored both CD4(+) T cell activation and Ab responses, demonstrating that Tregs were required for the observed tolerance. Our results demonstrate that Ag delivery to pDCs through BDCA2 is an effective method to induce immunological tolerance, which may be useful for treating autoimmune diseases or to inhibit unwanted Ab responses.
The Journal of Immunology 05/2014; · 5.52 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Barrier surfaces, such as the intestinal lining and the skin, are colonized by a diverse community of commensal microorganisms. Although commensal microorganisms clearly impact the host immune system, whether the immune system also shapes the commensal community is poorly understood. We used 16S rDNA deep sequencing to test whether mice with specific immune defects have an altered commensal microflora. Initially, skin swabs were obtained from wild-type and Langerhans Cell (LC) deficient mice. Despite the intimate contacts that LC make with the upper epidermis, no significant differences were observed in microbial community composition. Similarly, the skin of MyD88/TRIF(-/-), Rag1(-/-) and heterozygous littermate controls showed no alteration in their commensal communities. Next we examined mouth swabs and feces. We did not find a difference in the MyD88/TRIF(-/-) mice. However, we did observe a significant shift in the microbial composition in the feces and mouths of Rag1(-/-) mice. Thus, we conclude that the adaptive immune system modulates the microbial composition at mucosal surfaces in the steady-state but LC, adaptive immunity, and MyD88-dependent innate responses do not affect the skin microbiome revealing a major distinction between barrier sites.
PLoS ONE 01/2014; 9(1):e84019. · 3.53 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Dendritic cells (DCs) in the intestinal lamina propria (LP) are composed of two CD103(+) subsets that differ in CD11b expression. We report here that Langerin is expressed by human LP DCs and that transgenic human langerin drives expression in CD103(+)CD11b(+) LP DCs in mice. This subset was ablated in huLangerin-DTA mice, resulting in reduced LP Th17 cells without affecting Th1 or T reg cells. Notably, cognate DC-T cell interactions were not required for Th17 development, as this response was intact in huLangerin-Cre I-Aβ(fl/fl) mice. In contrast, responses to intestinal infection or flagellin administration were unaffected by the absence of CD103(+)CD11b(+) DCs. huLangerin-DTA x BatF3(-/-) mice lacked both CD103(+) LP DC subsets, resulting in defective gut homing and fewer LP T reg cells. Despite these defects in LP DCs and resident T cells, we did not observe alterations of intestinal microbial communities. Thus, CD103(+) LP DC subsets control T cell homeostasis through both nonredundant and overlapping mechanisms.
Journal of Experimental Medicine 09/2013; · 13.21 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Langerhans cells and other skin-resident dendritic cells (DC) are required for the development of cutaneous adaptive immune responses. In vivo experiments using mice with selective DC-subset deficiencies and ex vivo experiments using isolated DC suggests that each subset makes a unique contribution to the adaptive response. This review focuses on the functional outcome of antigen presentation by Langerhans cells. Special attention is given to their ability to promote CD4 T cell differentiation in a variety of inflammatory contexts and whether this subset has the capacity to cross-prime CD8 T cells.
Current opinion in immunology 12/2012; · 10.88 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Nucleotide-binding domain leucine-rich repeat containing receptors (NLRs) are cytosolic receptors that initiate immune responses to sterile and infectious insults to the host. Studies demonstrated that Nlrp3 is critical for the control of Candida albicans infections and in the generation of antifungal Th17 responses. In this article, we show that the NLR family member Nlrp10 also plays a unique role in the control of disseminated C. albicans infection in vivo. Nlrp10-deficient mice had increased susceptibility to disseminated candidiasis, as indicated by decreased survival and increased fungal burdens. In contrast to Nlrp3, Nlrp10 deficiency did not affect innate proinflammatory cytokine production from macrophages and dendritic cells challenged with C. albicans. However, Nlrp10-deficient mice displayed a profound defect in Candida-specific Th1 and Th17 responses. These results demonstrate a novel role for Nlrp10 in the generation of adaptive immune responses to fungal infection.
The Journal of Immunology 10/2012; · 5.52 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Targeting of Ags directly to dendritic cells (DCs) through anti-DC receptor Ab fused to Ag proteins is a promising approach to vaccine development. However, not all Ags can be expressed as a rAb directly fused to a protein Ag. In this study, we show that noncovalent assembly of Ab-Ag complexes, mediated by interaction between dockerin and cohesin domains from cellulose-degrading bacteria, can greatly expand the range of Ags for this DC-targeting vaccine technology. rAbs with a dockerin domain fused to the rAb H chain C terminus are efficiently secreted by mammalian cells, and many Ags not secreted as rAb fusion proteins are readily expressed as cohesin directly fused to Ag either via secretion from mammalian cells or as soluble cytoplasmic Escherichia coli products. These form very stable and homogeneous complexes with rAb fused to dockerin. In vitro, these complexes can efficiently bind to human DC receptors followed by presentation to Ag-specific CD4⁺ and CD8⁺ T cells. Low doses of the HA1 subunit of influenza hemagglutinin conjugated through this means to anti-Langerin rAbs elicited Flu HA1-specific Ab and T cell responses in mice. Thus, the noncovalent assembly of rAb and Ag through dockerin and cohesin interaction provides a useful modular strategy for development and testing of prototype vaccines for elicitation of Ag-specific T and B cell responses, particularly when direct rAb fusions to Ag cannot be expressed.
The Journal of Immunology 08/2012; 189(5):2645-55. · 5.52 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Langerhans cells (LCs) are skin-resident dendritic cells (DC) located in the epidermis that migrate to skin-draining lymph nodes during the steady state and in response to inflammatory stimuli. TGF-β1 is a critical immune regulator that is highly expressed by LCs. The ability to test the functional importance of LC-derived TGF-β1 is complicated by the requirement of TGF-β1 for LC development and by the absence of LCs in mice with an LC-specific ablation of TGF-β1 or its receptor. To overcome these problems, we have engineered transgenic huLangerin-CreER(T2) mice that allow for inducible LC-specific excision. Highly efficient and LC-specific expression was confirmed in mice bred onto a YFP Cre reporter strain. We next generated huLangerin-CreER(T2) × TGF-βRII(fl) and huLangerin-CreER(T2) × TGF-β1(fl) mice. Excision of the TGFβRII or TGFβ1 genes induced mass migration of LCs to the regional lymph node. Expression of costimulatory markers and inflammatory cytokines was unaffected, consistent with homeostatic migration. In addition, levels of p-SMAD2/3 were decreased in LCs from wild-type mice before inflammation-induced migration. We conclude that TGF-β1 acts directly on LCs in an autocrine/paracrine manner to inhibit steady-state and inflammation-induced migration. This is a readily targetable pathway with potential therapeutic implications for skin disease.
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 06/2012; 109(26):10492-7. · 9.81 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Langerhans cells (LC) are a subset of skin-resident dendritic cells (DC) that reside in the epidermis as immature DC, where they acquire Ag. A key step in the life cycle of LC is their activation into mature DC in response to various stimuli, including epicutaneous sensitization with hapten and skin infection with Candida albicans. Mature LC migrate to the skin-draining LN, where they present Ag to CD4 T cells and modulate the adaptive immune response. LC migration is thought to require the direct action of IL-1β and IL-18 on LC. In addition, TLR ligands are present in C. albicans, and hapten sensitization produces endogenous TLR ligands. Both could contribute to LC activation. We generated Langerin-Cre MyD88(fl) mice in which LC are insensitive to IL-1 family members and most TLR ligands. LC migration in the steady state, after hapten sensitization and postinfection with C. albicans, was unaffected. Contact hypersensitivity in Langerin-Cre MyD88(fl) mice was similarly unaffected. Interestingly, in response to C. albicans infection, these mice displayed reduced proliferation of Ag-specific CD4 T cells and defective Th17 subset differentiation. Surface expression of costimulatory molecules was intact on LC, but expression of IL-1β, IL-6, and IL-23 was reduced. Thus, sensitivity to MyD88-dependent signals is not required for LC migration, but is required for the full activation and function of LC in the setting of fungal infection.
The Journal of Immunology 03/2012; 188(9):4334-9. · 5.52 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: After activation, Langerhans cells (LC), a distinct subpopulation of epidermis-resident dendritic cells, migrate from skin to lymph nodes where they regulate the magnitude and quality of immune responses initiated by epicutaneously applied antigens. Modulation of LC-keratinocyte adhesion is likely to be central to regulation of LC migration. LC express high levels of epithelial cell adhesion molecule (EpCAM; CD326), a cell-surface protein that is characteristic of some epithelia and many carcinomas and that has been implicated in intercellular adhesion and metastasis. To gain insight into EpCAM function in a physiologic context in vivo, we generated conditional knockout mice with EpCAM-deficient LC and characterized them. Epidermis from these mice contained increased numbers of LC with normal levels of MHC and costimulatory molecules and T-cell-stimulatory activity in vitro. Migration of EpCAM-deficient LC from skin explants was inhibited, but chemotaxis of dissociated LC was not. Correspondingly, the ability of contact allergen-stimulated, EpCAM-deficient LC to exit epidermis in vivo was delayed, and strikingly fewer hapten-bearing LC subsequently accumulated in lymph nodes. Attenuated migration of EpCAM-deficient LC resulted in enhanced contact hypersensitivity responses as previously described in LC-deficient mice. Intravital microscopy revealed reduced translocation and dendrite motility in EpCAM-deficient LC in vivo in contact allergen-treated mice. These results conclusively link EpCAM expression to LC motility/migration and LC migration to immune regulation. EpCAM appears to promote LC migration from epidermis by decreasing LC-keratinocyte adhesion and may modulate intercellular adhesion and cell movement within in epithelia during development and carcinogenesis in an analogous fashion.
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 03/2012; 109(15):E889-97. · 9.81 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The clarification of cutaneous dendritic cell subset and the role of thymic stromal lymphopoietin (TSLP) signaling in epicutaneous sensitization with protein antigens, as in the development of atopic dermatitis, is a crucial issue.
Because TSLP is highly expressed in the vicinity of Langerhans cells (LCs), we sought to clarify our hypothesis that LCs play an essential role in epicutaneous sensitization with protein antigens through TSLP signaling.
By using Langerin-diphtheria toxin receptor knock-in mice and human Langerin-diphtheria toxin A transgenic mice, we prepared mice deficient in LCs. We also prepared mice deficient in TSLP receptors in LCs by using TSLP receptor-deficient mice with bone marrow chimeric technique. We applied these mice to an ovalbumin (OVA)-induced epicutaneous sensitization model.
Upon the epicutaneous application of OVA, conditional LC depletion attenuated the development of clinical manifestations as well as serum OVA-specific IgE increase, OVA-specific T-cell proliferation, and IL-4 mRNA expression in the draining lymph nodes. Consistently, even in the steady state, permanent LC depletion resulted in decreased serum IgE levels, suggesting that LCs mediate the T(H)2 local environment. In addition, mice deficient in TSLP receptors on LCs abrogated the induction of OVA-specific IgE levels upon epicutaneous OVA sensitization.
LCs initiate epicutaneous sensitization with protein antigens and induce T(H)2-type immune responses via TSLP signaling.
The Journal of allergy and clinical immunology 02/2012; 129(4):1048-55.e6. · 12.05 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The skin is a barrier site that is exposed to a wide variety of potential pathogens. As in other organs, pathogens that invade the skin are recognized by pattern-recognition receptors (PRRs). Recently, it has been recognized that PRRs are also engaged by chemical contact allergens and, in susceptible individuals, this elicits an inappropriate immune response that results in allergic contact dermatitis. In this Review, we focus on how contact allergens promote inflammation by activating the innate immune system. We also examine how innate immune cells in the skin, including mast cells and dendritic cells, cooperate with each other and with T cells and keratinocytes to initiate and drive early responses to contact allergens.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are prevalent, potent carcinogens, and 7,12-dimethylbenz[a]anthracene (DMBA) is a model PAH widely used to study tumorigenesis. Mice lacking Langerhans cells (LCs), a signatory epidermal dendritic cell (DC), are protected from cutaneous chemical carcinogenesis, independent of T cell immunity. Investigation of the underlying mechanism revealed that LC-deficient skin was relatively resistant to DMBA-induced DNA damage. LCs efficiently metabolized DMBA to DMBA-trans-3,4-diol, an intermediate proximal to oncogenic Hras mutation, and DMBA-treated LC-deficient skin contained significantly fewer Hras mutations. Moreover, DMBA-trans-3,4-diol application bypassed tumor resistance in LC-deficient mice. Additionally, the genotoxic impact of DMBA on human keratinocytes was significantly increased by prior incubation with human-derived LC. Thus, tissue-associated DC can enhance chemical carcinogenesis via PAH metabolism, highlighting the complex relation between immune cells and carcinogenesis.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Skin-resident dendritic cells (DCs) are well positioned to encounter cutaneous pathogens and are required for the initiation of adaptive immune responses. There are at least three subsets of skin DC- Langerhans cells (LC), Langerin(+) dermal DCs (dDCs), and classic dDCs. Whether these subsets have distinct or redundant function in vivo is poorly understood. Using a Candida albicans skin infection model, we have shown that direct presentation of antigen by LC is necessary and sufficient for the generation of antigen-specific T helper-17 (Th17) cells but not for the generation of cytotoxic lymphocytes (CTLs). In contrast, Langerin(+) dDCs are required for the generation of antigen specific CTL and Th1 cells. Langerin(+) dDCs also inhibited the ability of LCs and classic DCs to promote Th17 cell responses. This work demonstrates that skin-resident DC subsets promote distinct and opposing antigen-specific responses.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The success of a non-live vaccine requires improved formulation and adjuvant selection to generate robust T cell immunity following immunization. Here, using protein linked to a TLR7/8 agonist (conjugate vaccine), we investigated the functional properties of vaccine formulation, the cytokines, and the DC subsets required to induce protective multifunctional T cell immunity in vivo. The conjugate vaccine required aggregation of the protein to elicit potent Th1 CD4+ and CD8+ T cell responses. Remarkably, the conjugate vaccine, through aggregation of the protein and activation of TLR7 in vivo, led to an influx of migratory DCs to the LN and increased antigen uptake by several resident and migratory DC subsets, with the latter effect strongly influenced by vaccine-induced type I IFN. Ex vivo migratory CD8-DEC205+CD103-CD326- langerin-negative dermal DCs were as potent in cross-presenting antigen to naive CD8+ T cells as CD11c+CD8+ DCs. Moreover, these cells also influenced Th1 CD4+ T cell priming. In summary, we propose a model in which broad-based T cell-mediated responses upon vaccination can be maximized by codelivery of aggregated protein and TLR7/8 agonist, which together promote optimal antigen acquisition and presentation by multiple DC subsets in the context of critical proinflammatory cytokines.
The Journal of clinical investigation 05/2011; 121(5):1782-96. · 15.39 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: This study tested the hypothesis that Vγ3 TCR-bearing T cells are influenced by LCs. Vγ3 T cells and LCs are located in the epidermis of mice. Vγ3 T cells represent the main T cell population in the skin epithelium and play a crucial role in maintaining the skin integrity, whereas LCs are professional APCs. Although Vγ3 T cells and LCs form an interdigitating network in the epidermis, not much is known about their reciprocal influence and/or interdependence. We used two different LC-deficient mouse models, in which LCs are constitutively or inducibly depleted, to investigate the role of LCs in maturation, homeostasis, and function of Vγ3 T cells. We show that Vγ3 T cell numbers are unaltered by LC deficiency, and Vγ3 T cells isolated from LC-deficient mice are phenotypically and upon in vitro stimulation, functionally indistinguishable from Vγ3 T cells isolated from WT mice based on their cytotoxic potential and cytokine production. Additionally, in vivo skin-wounding experiments show no major difference in response of Vγ3 T cells to wounding in the absence or presence of LCs. These observations indicate that Vγ3 T cells develop and function independently of LCs.
Journal of leukocyte biology 04/2011; 90(1):61-8. · 4.99 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In addition to Langerhans cells (LCs), other dendritic cells (CD11c(+)) have recently been shown to express Langerin (c-type lectin). In skin, (non-LC) Langerin+ dendritic cells initiate adaptive immunity. However, whether such dendritic cells (DC) reside in the cornea, an immune-privileged tissue, is unknown.
Normal C57BL/6 corneas were harvested for qRT-PCR analyses of Langerin expression in the epithelium versus stroma. Immunohistochemistry for Langerin was also performed. Single-cell preparations of epithelium versus stroma were FACS analyzed for CD11c, CD11b, and CD103 expression. Fluorescence microscopy of corneas from muLangerin-eGFP mice (in which all CD11c(+) Langerin+ cells express eGFP), huLangerin-DTA mice (only LCs are constitutively deleted), and huLangerin-Cre eYFP-flox (only LCs express eYFP) was performed.
qRT-PCR, immunohistochemistry, and FACS analysis identified CD11c(+) Langerin+ cells in the epithelium and stroma. Similarly, corneas of muLangerin-eGFP mice contained eGFP+ cells in the epithelium and stroma. However, FACS analysis indicated phenotypically differing CD11c(+) Langerin+ populations in the epithelium (CD11b(low)CD103(low)) versus stroma (CD11b(+)CD103(low)). Additionally, corneas from huLangerin-DTA mice were devoid of Langerin+ cells in the epithelium but were detectable in the stroma. In corneas from huLangerin-Cre eYFP-flox, eYFP+ cells were detectable in the epithelium but not in the stroma.
The normal corneal epithelium is endowed with CD11c(+) Langerin+ cells that are LCs, whereas the stroma is endowed with a separate population of (non-LC) Langerin+ DCs. These findings should henceforth facilitate the examination of Langerin-expressing DC subsets in the immunopathogeneses of conditions such as keratoconjunctivitis sicca, allergic keratoconjunctivitis, and corneal allograft rejection.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Dendritic cells (DCs) initiate and control the adaptive immune response against infections. However, their contributions to the anti-self adaptive immune response in autoimmune disorders like systemic lupus erythematosus are uncertain. By constitutively deleting DCs in MRL.Fas(lpr) mice, we show that they have complex roles in murine lupus. The net effect of DC deletion was to ameliorate disease. DCs were crucial for the expansion and differentiation of T cells but, surprisingly, not required for their initial activation. Correspondingly, kidney interstitial infiltrates developed in the absence of DCs, but failed to progress. DC deletion concomitantly decreased inflammatory and regulatory T cell numbers. Unexpectedly, plasmablast numbers and autoantibody concentrations depended on DCs, in contrast to total serum immunoglobulin concentrations, suggesting an effect of DCs on extrafollicular humoral responses. These findings reveal that DCs operate in unanticipated ways in murine lupus and validate them as a potential therapeutic target in autoimmunity.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Understanding the function of Langerhans cells (LCs) in vivo has been complicated by conflicting results from LC-deficient mice. Human Langerin-DTA mice constitutively lack LCs and develop exaggerated contact hypersensitivity (CHS) responses. Murine Langerin-diphtheria toxin receptor (DTR) mice allow for the inducible elimination of LCs and Langerin(+) dermal dendritic cells (dDCs) after administration of diphtheria toxin, which results in reduced CHS. When Langerin(+) dDCs have partially repopulated the skin but LCs are still absent, CHS returns to normal. Thus, LCs appear to be suppressive in human Langerin-DTA mice and redundant in murine Langerin-DTR mice. To determine whether inducible versus constitutive LC ablation explains these results, we engineered human Langerin-DTR mice in which diphtheria toxin ablates LCs without affecting Langerin(+) dDCs. The inducible ablation of LCs in human Langerin-DTR mice resulted in increased CHS. Thus, LC-mediated suppression does not require their absence during ontogeny or during the steady-state and is consistent with a model in which LCs actively suppress Ag-specific CHS responses.
The Journal of Immunology 10/2010; 185(8):4724-8. · 5.52 Impact Factor