Cross-dressing: An alternative mechanism for antigen presentation

Stefania Campana, Claudia De Pasquale, Paolo Carrega, Guido Ferlazzo, Irene Bonaccorsi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Cross-dressing involves the transfer of preformed functional peptide-MHC complexes from the surface of donor cells to recipient cells, such as dendritic cells (DCs). These cross-dressed cells might eventually present the intact, unprocessed peptide-MHC complexes to T lymphocytes. In this review we will discuss some recent findings concerning the intercellular transfer of preformed MHC complexes and the possible mechanisms by which the transfer may occur. We will report evidences showing that both MHC class I and MHC class II functional complexes might be transferred, highlighting the physiological relevance of these cross-dressed cells for the presentation of exogenous antigens to both cytotoxic and helper T lymphocytes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)349-354
Number of pages6
JournalImmunology Letters
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2015


  • Antigen presentation
  • Cross-dressing
  • Dendritic cells
  • Exosomes
  • Trogocytosis
  • Tunneling nanotubes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Immunology and Allergy


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