Plasmacytoid dendritic cells (pDCs) are a subset of dendritic cells endowed with the capacity of producing large amounts of IFNa. Here we show that the Leukocyte-Associated Ig-like Receptor-1 (LAIR-1) is abundantly expressed on pDCs (the highest expression among all leukocytes) and its cross-linking inhibits IFNa production in response to Toll-like receptor ligands. Remarkably, LAIR-1 expression in pDCs is down-regulated in the presence of interleukin (IL)-3, thus indicating coordinated functions with NKp44, another pDC inhibitory receptor, which is conversely induced by IL-3. Nevertheless, the expression of NKp44 in pDCs isolated from secondary lymphoid organs, which is thought to be influenced by IL-3, is not coupled to a decreased expression of LAIR-1. Interestingly, pDCs isolated from peripheral blood of systemic lupus erithematosus (SLE) patients express lower levels of LAIR-1 while displaying slight but consistent expression of NKp44, usually undetectable on pDCs derived from healthy donors. Using sera derived from SLE patients, we show that LAIR-1 and NKp44 display synergistic inhibitory effects on IFNa production by interleukin IL-3 cultured pDCs stimulated with DNA immunocomplexes. In conclusion, our results indicate that the inhibitory function of LAIR-1 may play a relevant role in the mechanisms controlling IFNa production by pDCs both in normal and pathological innate immune responses.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)