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Natural killer cell activation by dendritic cells: balancing inhibitory and activating signals


Barreira da Silva, R; Münz, C (2011). Natural killer cell activation by dendritic cells: balancing inhibitory and activating signals. Cellular and Molecular Life Sciences, 68(21):3505-3518.

Abstract

Natural killer (NK) cells have originally been identified by their spontaneous cytolytic potential against tumor cells, which, however, might result from pre-activation due to prior pathogen exposure. Resting NK cells, on the contrary, require activation by bystander antigen-presenting cells to reach their full functional competence. In this review, we will summarize studies on how dendritic cells (DCs), the most potent type of antigen-presenting cell, communicate with human NK cells to activate them in secondary lymphoid organs and to integrate signals from activated NK cells at sites of inflammation for their own maturation. Furthermore, we will review aspects of the immunological synapse, which mediates this cross-talk. These studies provide the mechanistic understanding of how mature DCs can activate NK cells and survive to go on for the activation of adaptive immunity. This feature of DCs, to activate different waves of immune responses, could be harnessed for immunotherapies, including vaccinations.

Natural killer (NK) cells have originally been identified by their spontaneous cytolytic potential against tumor cells, which, however, might result from pre-activation due to prior pathogen exposure. Resting NK cells, on the contrary, require activation by bystander antigen-presenting cells to reach their full functional competence. In this review, we will summarize studies on how dendritic cells (DCs), the most potent type of antigen-presenting cell, communicate with human NK cells to activate them in secondary lymphoid organs and to integrate signals from activated NK cells at sites of inflammation for their own maturation. Furthermore, we will review aspects of the immunological synapse, which mediates this cross-talk. These studies provide the mechanistic understanding of how mature DCs can activate NK cells and survive to go on for the activation of adaptive immunity. This feature of DCs, to activate different waves of immune responses, could be harnessed for immunotherapies, including vaccinations.

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30 citations in Web of Science®
34 citations in Scopus®
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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, further contribution
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > Institute of Experimental Immunology
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:August 2011
Deposited On:29 Jan 2012 15:26
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 15:30
Publisher:Springer
ISSN:1420-682X
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1007/s00018-011-0801-8
PubMed ID:21861182
Permanent URL: https://doi.org/10.5167/uzh-57395

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