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

Human plasmacytoid dendritic cells regulate immune responses to Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) infection and delay EBV-related mortality in humanized NOD-SCID mice.

Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) is associated with posttransplant lymphoproliferative disease (PTLD), which is a leading cause of cancer death in recipients of transplants. We investigated the role of plasmacytoid dendritic cells (PDCs) in the development of EBV infection and the onset of lymphoproliferative disease (LPD) in humanized NOD-SCID mice and studied the effect of EBV on PDC function. NOD-SCID mice reconstituted with PDC-depleted peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) from EBV IgG(+) human donors had significantly enhanced mortality from disseminated EBV infection (median survival, 43 days) compared to PBMC-only mice (median survival, 72 days; log-rank P < .05). Mice reconstituted with PDC-enriched PBMCs challenged with EBV exhibited delayed mortality from EBV-LPD (median survival, 80 days) compared to PBMC-only mice challenged with EBV (median survival, 50 days; log-rank P < .05). EBV-stimulated pDCs produced interferon alpha (IFN-alpha) and promoted the activation of natural killer cells and IFN-gamma-producing CD3(+)T cells. PDC activation of CD3(+)T cells in response to EBV stimulation was dependent on cell-to-cell contact, in part mediated by toll-like receptor 9 ( TLR-9) signaling that was inhibited by chloroquine and TLR-9 inhibitory CpG. Thus, PDCs play an important role in anti-EBV cellular immune responses that may be targets for manipulation in novel strategies for the treatment of PTLD.[1]


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