Human peripheral blood contains two distinct lineages of dendritic cells

Eur J Immunol. 1999 Sep;29(9):2769-78. doi: 10.1002/(SICI)1521-4141(199909)29:09<2769::AID-IMMU2769>3.0.CO;2-2.


Human peripheral blood contains two populations of dendritic cells (DC) but their developmental relationship has not been established. Freshly isolated CD11c- DC possessed a lymphoid morphology, lacked myeloid markers but expressed lymphoid markers (CD4+ CD10+) whilst the CD11c+ DC were monocytoid in appearance and expressed myeloid markers. Although both populations were allostimulatory, only the CD11c+ DC were able to take up antigen. Irrespective of the culture conditions the CD11c- cells developed into CD11c- CD13- CD33- CD4+ CD1a- CD83+/- DC. In contrast, cultured CD11c+ cells developed the phenotype CD11c+ CD13+ CD33+/- CD4- CD1a+ CD83+ CD9+. Only the CD11c+ DC expressed macrophage colony-stimulating factor (M-CSF) receptor and gave rise to CD14+, esterase+, phagocytic macrophages when cultured in M-CSF. These data suggest that these two populations of DC represent distinct lineages of antigen-presenting DC.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Antigens, Surface / blood
  • Cell Cycle / drug effects
  • Cell Cycle / physiology
  • Cell Differentiation / drug effects
  • Cell Lineage / genetics
  • Cell Lineage / immunology
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Cytokines / pharmacology
  • Dendritic Cells / immunology*
  • Flow Cytometry
  • Granulocyte-Macrophage Colony-Stimulating Factor / pharmacology
  • Humans
  • Immunophenotyping
  • Lymphocyte Subsets / chemistry
  • Lymphocyte Subsets / drug effects
  • Lymphocyte Subsets / physiology
  • Macrophage Colony-Stimulating Factor / pharmacology
  • Macrophages / metabolism
  • Time Factors
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha / pharmacology


  • Antigens, Surface
  • Cytokines
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha
  • Macrophage Colony-Stimulating Factor
  • Granulocyte-Macrophage Colony-Stimulating Factor