Myeloid dendritic cells, including BDCA3hi DCs and BDCA1+ DCs (hereafter dubbed DC1 and DC2 for clarity), play a pivotal role in the induction and regulation of immune responses. Interestingly, a fraction of DC2 also express low to intermediate levels of BDCA3. It is unknown whether BDCA3+ DC2 also share other traits with DC1 that are absent in BDCA3- DC2 and/or whether BDCA3 expression renders DC2 functionally distinct from their BDCA3-lacking counterparts. Here, we used expression analysis on a predefined set of immunology-related genes to determine divergence between BDCA3-positive and BDCA3-negative DC2 and their relation to bona fide BDCA3hi DC1. Results showed that mRNA fingerprints of BDCA3+ DC2 and BDCA3- DC2 are very similar, and clearly distinct from that of DC1. Differences in mRNA expression, however, were observed between BDCA3+ DC2 and BDCA3- DC2 that pointed toward a more activated status of BDCA3+ DC2. In line with this, higher steady state maturation marker expression and TLR-induced maturation marker expression and inflammatory cytokine production by BDCA3+ DC2 were observed. This dataset provides insight into the relationship between myeloid DC populations and contributes to further understanding of DC immunobiology.

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Immunology and Cell Biology
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

van der Aa, E., Biesta, P., Woltman, A., & Buschow, S. I. (2018). Transcriptional patterns associated with BDCA3 expression on BDCA1+ myeloid dendritic cells. Immunology and Cell Biology. doi:10.1111/imcb.12002