Lymphotoxin/light, lymphoid microenvironments and autoimmune disease

Nat Rev Immunol. 2003 Aug;3(8):642-55. doi: 10.1038/nri1151.


Much of the efficiency of the immune system is attributed to the high degree of spatial and temporal organization in the secondary lymphoid organs. Signalling through the lymphotoxin (LT) pathway is a crucial element in the maintenance of this organized microenvironment. The effect of altering lymphoid microenvironments on immune responses remains relatively unexplored. Inhibitors of the LT and LIGHT pathways have been shown to reduce disease in a wide range of autoimmune models. This approach has provided a tool to probe the effect of manipulation of the microenvironment on both normal and pathological immune responses.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Autoimmune Diseases / immunology*
  • Dendritic Cells, Follicular / immunology
  • Humans
  • Lymphoid Tissue / immunology*
  • Lymphotoxin-alpha / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Lymphotoxin-alpha / immunology*
  • Receptors, Tumor Necrosis Factor / immunology
  • Signal Transduction / immunology


  • Lymphotoxin-alpha
  • Receptors, Tumor Necrosis Factor