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1.  Human Plasmacytoid Dendritic Cells: From Molecules to Intercellular Communication Network 
Plasmacytoid dendritic cells (pDCs) are a specific subset of naturally occurring dendritic cells, that secrete large amounts of Type I interferon and play an important role in the immune response against viral infection. Several studies have highlighted that they are also effective antigen presenting cells, making them an interesting target for immunotherapy against cancer. However, the modes of action of pDCs are not restricted to antigen presentation and IFN secretion alone. In this review we will highlight a selection of cell surface proteins expressed by human pDCs that may facilitate communication with other immune cells, and we will discuss the implications of these molecules for pDC-driven immune responses.
PMCID: PMC3825182  PMID: 24282405
cross talk; surface markers; T lymphocytes; viral infection; pDC migration
2.  The Modular Nature of Dendritic Cell Responses to Commensal and Pathogenic Fungi 
PLoS ONE  2012;7(8):e42430.
The type of adaptive immune response following host-fungi interaction is largely determined at the level of the antigen-presenting cells, and in particular by dendritic cells (DCs). The extent to which transcriptional regulatory events determine the decision making process in DCs is still an open question. By applying the highly structured DC-ATLAS pathways to analyze DC responses, we classified the various stimuli by revealing the modular nature of the different transcriptional programs governing the recognition of either pathogenic or commensal fungi. Through comparison of the network parts affected by DC stimulation with fungal cells and purified single agonists, we could determine the contribution of each receptor during the recognition process. We observed that initial recognition of a fungus creates a temporal window during which the simultaneous recruitment of cell surface receptors can intensify, complement and sustain the DC activation process. The breakdown of the response to whole live cells, through the purified components, showed how the response to invading fungi uses a set of specific modules. We find that at the start of fungal recognition, DCs rapidly initiate the activation process. Ligand recognition is further enhanced by over-expression of the receptor genes, with a significant correspondence between gene expression and protein levels and function. Then a marked decrease in the receptor levels follows, suggesting that at this moment the DC commits to a specific fate. Overall our pathway based studies show that the temporal window of the fungal recognition process depends on the availability of ligands and is different for pathogens and commensals. Modular analysis of receptor and signalling-adaptor expression changes, in the early phase of pathogen recognition, is a valuable tool for rapid and efficient dissection of the pathogen derived components that determine the phenotype of the DC and thereby the type of immune response initiated.
PMCID: PMC3411757  PMID: 22879980
3.  The chemotherapeutic drug oxaliplatin differentially affects blood DC function dependent on environmental cues 
Cancer Immunology, Immunotherapy  2011;61(7):1101-1111.
It has become evident that the tumor microenvironment plays a pivotal role in the maintenance of cancerous growth. One of the acquired functions of the tumor microenvironment is the suppression of immune responses. Indeed, blocking the inhibitory pathways operational in the microenvironment results in enhanced T-cell-dependent, anti-tumor immunity. Chemotherapeutic drugs not only directly kill tumor cells but also shape the tumor microenvironment and potentiate anti-tumor immunity. Here, we demonstrate that the chemotherapeutic compound oxaliplatin acts as a double-edged sword. Besides killing tumor cells, oxaliplatin bolsters immunosuppressive pathways, resulting in decreased activation of T cells by human plasmacytoid dendritic cells (pDCs). Exposure to oxaliplatin markedly increased expression of the T-cell inhibitory molecule programmed death receptor-ligand 1 (PD-L1) on human pDCs and also TLR9-induced IFNα secretion. Furthermore, oxaliplatin decreased TLR-induced STAT1 and STAT3 expression, and NF-κB-mediated responses. The oxaliplatin induced upregulation of PD-L1 and downregulation of costimulatory molecules CD80 and CD86 resulted in decreased T-cell proliferation. Our results demonstrate that platinum-based anticancer drugs adapt TLR-induced signaling in human pDCs and myeloid DCs (mDCs), thereby downgrading their immunostimulatory potential.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s00262-011-1189-x) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
PMCID: PMC3378839  PMID: 22193989
Blood DC subsets; PD-L1; TLR; Oxaliplatin
4.  DC-ATLAS: a systems biology resource to dissect receptor specific signal transduction in dendritic cells 
Immunome Research  2010;6:10.
The advent of Systems Biology has been accompanied by the blooming of pathway databases. Currently pathways are defined generically with respect to the organ or cell type where a reaction takes place. The cell type specificity of the reactions is the foundation of immunological research, and capturing this specificity is of paramount importance when using pathway-based analyses to decipher complex immunological datasets. Here, we present DC-ATLAS, a novel and versatile resource for the interpretation of high-throughput data generated perturbing the signaling network of dendritic cells (DCs).
Pathways are annotated using a novel data model, the Biological Connection Markup Language (BCML), a SBGN-compliant data format developed to store the large amount of information collected. The application of DC-ATLAS to pathway-based analysis of the transcriptional program of DCs stimulated with agonists of the toll-like receptor family allows an integrated description of the flow of information from the cellular sensors to the functional outcome, capturing the temporal series of activation events by grouping sets of reactions that occur at different time points in well-defined functional modules.
The initiative significantly improves our understanding of DC biology and regulatory networks. Developing a systems biology approach for immune system holds the promise of translating knowledge on the immune system into more successful immunotherapy strategies.
PMCID: PMC3000836  PMID: 21092113
5.  The Role of Cargo Proteins in GGA Recruitment 
Traffic (Copenhagen, Denmark)  2007;8(5):594-604.
Coat proteins are recruited onto membranes to form vesicles that transport cargo from one compartment to another, but the extent to which the cargo helps to recruit the coat proteins is still unclear. Here we have examined the role of cargo in the recruitment of Golgi-localized, γ-ear-containing, ADP ribosylation factor (ARF)-binding proteins (GGAs) onto membranes in HeLa cells. Moderate overexpression of CD8 chimeras with cytoplasmic tails containing DXXLL-sorting signals, which bind to GGAs, increased the localization of all three GGAs to perinuclear membranes, as observed by immunofluorescence. GGA2 was also expressed at approximately twofold higher levels in these cells because it was degraded more slowly. However, this difference only partially accounted for the increase in membrane localization because there was a approximately fivefold increase in GGA2 associated with crude membranes and a ∼12-fold increase in GGA2 associated with clathrin-coated vesicles (CCVs) in cells expressing CD8-DXXLL chimeras. The effect of cargo proteins on GGA recruitment was reconstituted in vitro using permeabilized control and CD8-DXXLL-expressing cells incubated with cytosol containing recombinant GGA2 constructs. Together, these results demonstrate that cargo proteins contribute to the recruitment of GGAs onto membranes and to the formation of GGA-positive CCVs.
PMCID: PMC1891007  PMID: 17451558
AP-1; cation-independent mannose 6-phosphate receptor; clathrin; coated vesicle; TGN

Results 1-5 (5)