Priming of CD8+ and CD4+ T Cells in Experimental Leishmaniasis Is Initiated by Different Dendritic Cell Subtypes

Nancy Brewig, Adrien Kissenpfennig, Bernard Malissen, Alexandra Veit, Thomas Bickert, Bernhard Fleischer, Sven Mostböck, Uwe Ritter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

77 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The biological role of Langerin(+) dendritic cells (DCs) such as Langerhans cells and a subset of dermal DCs (dDCs) in adaptive immunity against cutaneous pathogens remains enigmatic. Thus, we analyzed the impact of Langerin(+) DCs in adaptive T cell-mediated immunity toward Leishmania major parasites in a Lang-DTR mouse model that allows conditional diphtheria toxin (DT)-induced ablation of The biological role of Langerin+ dendritic cells (DCs) such as Langerhans cells and a subset of dermal DCs (dDCs) in adaptive immunity against cutaneous pathogens remains enigmatic. Thus, we analyzed the impact of Langerin+ DCs in adaptive T cell-mediated immunity toward Leishmania major parasites in a Lang-DTR mouse model that allows conditional diphtheria toxin (DT)-induced ablation of Langerin+ DCs in vivo. For the first time, infection experiments with DT-treated Lang-DTR mice revealed that proliferation of L. major-specific CD8+ T cells is significantly reduced during the early phase of the immune response following depletion of Langerin+ DCs. Consequently, the total number of activated CD8+ T cells within the draining lymph node and at the site of infection is diminished. Furthermore, we show that the impaired CD8+ T cell response is due to the absence of Langerin+ dDCs and not Langerhans cells. Nevertheless, the CD4+ T cell response is not altered and the infection is cleared as effectively in DT-treated Lang-DTR mice as in control mice. This clearly demonstrates that Langerin+ DCs are, in general, dispensable for an efficient adaptive immune response against L. major parasites. Thus, we propose a novel concept that, in the experimental model of leishmaniasis, priming of CD4+ T cells is mediated by Langerin− dDCs, whereas Langerin+ dDCs are involved in early priming of CD8+ T cells.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)774-783
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Immunology
Volume182
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jan 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Medicine(all)

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