Experimental models linking dendritic cell lineage, phenotype and function.
Fazekas De St Groth B., L Smith A., Bosco J., Sze DM-Y., Power CA., Austen FI.
One of the important issues in dendritic cell (DC) biology today is how DC control the fate of T cells. Our data suggest that an important branch point in determining T cell fate is the decision between deletion and memory. We have previously hypothesized that this binary decision is determined by contact with DC derived from lymphoid- versus myeloid-restricted progenitors. However, the false attribution of CD8alpha expression as a reliable marker of lymphoid origin has underpinned a number of studies in which DC expressing CD8alpha did not induce deletion, thereby clouding the issue of whether deletion is indeed a function of lymphoid DC. By returning to basics, that is, functional testing of the progeny of lymphoid- and myeloid-restricted progenitors in vivo, we hope to provide clear evidence of the in vivo roles of lymphoid and myeloid DC subsets, independent of assumptions about the surface phenotypes they can assume.