Lung dendritic cells and host immunity to infection
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The lung is a portal of entry for numerous microbial pathogens, against which evolution has created an adequate innate and adaptive immune response. Dendritic cells (DCs) are central to the integration of innate and specific immunity. These cells are located within the epithelium and interstitium of the lung where they are influenced by the innate immune system. Upon recognition and internalization of microbial antigens, DCs migrate to the draining lymph nodes of the lung to initiate the specific cellular and humoral immune response. By their capacity to integrate stimuli derived from the pathogen, the host and the environment, they are specialized to induce a protective immune response while at the same time avoiding damage to the host. It is becoming increasingly clear that dendritic cells are involved in the induction of immunity to viruses, bacteria, mycobacteria and fungi. Some pathogens subvert the function of dendritic cells to escape immune recognition. Not surprisingly, if dendritic cell function fails, the consequence for the host is immunodeficiency.
- Dendritic Cells/*immunology/metabolism
- Immunity, Natural
- dendritic cells
- lymph nodes