Neutrophils in innate and adaptive immunity

Sébastien Jaillon, Maria Rosaria Galdiero, Davide Del Prete, Marco Antonio Cassatella, Cecilia Garlanda, Alberto Mantovani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Neutrophils have long been viewed as short-lived cells crucial for the elimination of extracellular pathogens, possessing a limited role in the orchestration of the immune response. This dogma has been challenged by recent lines of evidence demonstrating the expression of an increasing number of cytokines and effector molecules by neutrophils. Moreover, in analogy with their "big brother" macrophages, neutrophils integrate the environmental signals and can be polarized towards an antitumoural or protumoural phenotype. Neutrophils are a major source of humoral fluid phase pattern recognition molecules and thus contribute to the humoral arm of innate immunity. Neutrophils cross talk and shape the maturation and effector functions of other leukocytes in a direct or indirect manner, through cell-cell contact or cytokine production, respectively. Therefore, neutrophils are integrated in the activation and regulation of the innate and adaptive immune system and play an important role in the resolution or exacerbation of diverse pathologies, including infections, chronic inflammation, autoimmunity and cancer.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)377-394
Number of pages18
JournalSeminars in Immunopathology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2013


  • Adaptive immunity
  • Cancer
  • Inflammation
  • Innate immunity
  • Neutrophils
  • Pattern recognition molecule

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Immunology and Allergy


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