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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

MARCO, an innate activation marker of macrophages, is a class A scavenger receptor for Neisseria meningitidis.

The scavenger receptor-A I/II (SR-A) and macrophage receptor with collagenous domain ( MARCO) share a common domain organisation and ligand repertoire, including selected polyanions and gram-positive and -negative organisms, but differ in fine specificity of ligand binding, tissue distribution and regulation. Neisseria meningitidis (NM) is a selective ligand for SR-A, but there is evidence for an additional SR-A-independent, polyanion-sensitive component for NM recognition. We therefore studied the relative contribution of MARCO and SR-A to binding of NM by resident and elicited peritoneal macrophages obtained from MARCO-/-, SR-A-/- and SR-A- MARCO-/- mice. Results confirmed that both mouse and human MARCO are able to bind NM independently of NM LPS. MARCO and SR-A contributed independently to NM binding, correlating with their expression levels in different cell populations, but neither of these two molecules was required for release of TNF-alpha and nitric oxide. We propose that the TLR-dependent induction of MARCO by innate immune stimulation enhances recognition and uptake of pathogenic organisms such as NM, thus contributing to host defence against infection.[1]


  1. MARCO, an innate activation marker of macrophages, is a class A scavenger receptor for Neisseria meningitidis. Mukhopadhyay, S., Chen, Y., Sankala, M., Peiser, L., Pikkarainen, T., Kraal, G., Tryggvason, K., Gordon, S. Eur. J. Immunol. (2006) [Pubmed]
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