The immune inhibitory receptor LAIR-1 is highly expressed by plasmacytoid dendritic cells and acts complementary with NKp44 to control IFNα production

Irene Bonaccorsi, Claudia Cantoni, Paolo Carrega, Daniela Oliveri, Gabrielle Lui, Romana Conte, Michele Navarra, Riccardo Cavaliere, Elisabetta Traggiai, Marco Gattorno, Alberto Martini, Maria Cristina Mingari, Alessandro Moretta, Guido Ferlazzo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


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.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere15080
JournalPLoS One
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 2010


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Medicine(all)

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