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1.  Extracellular Localization of the Diterpene Sclareol in Clary Sage (Salvia sclarea L., Lamiaceae) 
PLoS ONE  2012;7(10):e48253.
Sclareol is a high-value natural product obtained by solid/liquid extraction of clary sage (Salvia sclarea L.) inflorescences. Because processes of excretion and accumulation of this labdane diterpene are unknown, the aim of this work was to gain knowledge on its sites of accumulation in planta. Samples were collected in natura or during different steps of the industrial process of extraction (steam distillation and solid/liquid extraction). Samples were then analysed with a combination of complementary analytical techniques (gas chromatography coupled to a mass spectrometer, polarized light microscopy, environmental scanning electron microscopy, two-photon fluorescence microscopy, second harmonic generation microscopy). According to the literature, it is hypothesized that sclareol is localized in oil pockets of secretory trichomes. This study demonstrates that this is not the case and that sclareol accumulates in a crystalline epicuticular form, mostly on calyces.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0048253
PMCID: PMC3484996  PMID: 23133579
2.  Direct contact of platelets and their released products exert different effects on human dendritic cell maturation 
BMC Immunology  2008;9:54.
Background
Dendritic cells (DCs) are antigen presenting cells capable of inducing innate and adaptive immune responses. According to the stimulus and their maturation state, DCs induce immunogenic or tolerogenic responses. Platelets (PLTs), which are involved in haemostasis and inflammation, can also interact with DCs. In this study, we examined the effect of PLTs on DC maturation in vitro. Human monocyte-derived DCs were co-cultured for 2 days with homologous PLTs either in the same well or in 0.4 μm-pore size filter-separated compartments.
Results
Confocal microscopy showed the attachment of PLTs to DC membranes. The DC receptor involved in this interactions was found to be CD162. In addition, we observed that DCs co-cultured with PLTs in filter-separated compartments acquired a mature phenotype (high CD80, CD86, and intermediate CD83 expression; IL-12(p70) production; efficient stimulation of autologous CD4+ T cell proliferation), while DCs co-cultured with PLTs in the same compartment did not undergo phenotypic maturation, did not secrete IL-12(p70) or IL-1β, but instead induced moderate Th2-polarized T cell proliferation.
Conclusion
These data indicate that (i) PLTs secrete a soluble DC-activating factor that was demonstrated not to be soluble CD40-Ligand (CD154; as could have been expected from in vivo and previous in vitro work) but to be nucleotide, and (ii) that cell-to-cell contact did not induce DC maturation, possibly because nucleotide release by PLTs was prevented by direct contact with DCs. This work demonstrates that PLTs are active elements of the immune system that might play a role in balancing the ability of DCs to polarize T cell responses, therefore making them critical factors in transfusion processes.
doi:10.1186/1471-2172-9-54
PMCID: PMC2564901  PMID: 18817542

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