Lymphocyte Homing and Homeostasis

ArticleinScience 272(5258):60-6 · May 1996with42 Reads
Impact Factor: 33.61 · DOI: 10.1126/science.272.5258.60 · Source: PubMed

    Abstract

    The integration and control of systemic immune responses depends on the regulated trafficking of lymphocytes. This lymphocyte
    “homing” process disperses the immunologic repertoire, directs lymphocyte subsets to the specialized microenvironments that
    control their differentiation and regulate their survival, and targets immune effector cells to sites of antigenic or microbial
    invasion. Recent advances reveal that the exquisite specificity of lymphocyte homing is determined by combinatorial “decision
    processes” involving multistep sequential engagement of adhesion and signaling receptors. These homing-related interactions
    are seamlessly integrated into the overall interaction of the lymphocyte with its environment and participate directly in
    the control of lymphocyte function, life-span, and population dynamics. In this article a review of the molecular basis of
    lymphocyte homing is presented, and mechanisms by which homing physiology regulates the homeostasis of immunologic resources
    are proposed.