Permanent survival of fully MHC-mismatched islet allografts by targeting a single chemokine receptor pathway

J Immunol. 2005 Nov 15;175(10):6311-8. doi: 10.4049/jimmunol.175.10.6311.


Chemokine receptor blockade can diminish the recruitment of host effector cells and prolong allograft survival, but little is known of the role of chemokine receptors in promoting host sensitization. We engrafted fully allogeneic islets into streptozotocin-treated normal mice or mice with the autosomal recessive paucity of lymph node T cell (plt) mutation; the latter lack secondary lymphoid expression of the CCR7 ligands, secondary lymphoid organ chemokine (CCL21) and EBV-induced molecule-1 ligand chemokine (CCL19). plt mice showed permanent survival of islets engrafted under the kidney capsule, whereas controls rejected islet allografts in 12 days (p < 0.001), and consistent with this, plt mice had normal allogeneic T cell responses, but deficient migration of donor dendritic cell to draining lymph nodes. Peritransplant i.v. injection of donor splenocytes caused plt recipients to reject their allografts by 12 days, and sensitization at 60 days posttransplant of plt mice with well-functioning allografts restored acute rejection. Finally, islet allografts transplanted intrahepatically in plt mice were rejected approximately 12 days posttransplant, like controls, as were primarily revascularized cardiac allografts. These data show that the chemokine-directed homing of donor dendritic cell to secondary lymphoid tissues is essential for host sensitization and allograft rejection. Interruption of such homing can prevent T cell priming and islet allograft rejection despite normal T and B cell functions of the recipient, with potential clinical implications.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • B-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • Chemokine CCL19
  • Chemokine CCL21
  • Chemokines, CC / metabolism
  • Dendritic Cells / immunology
  • Graft Rejection
  • Graft Survival
  • Heart Transplantation / immunology
  • Islets of Langerhans Transplantation / immunology*
  • Lymph Nodes / immunology
  • Lymphocyte Activation
  • Major Histocompatibility Complex
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Mice, Inbred DBA
  • Mice, Mutant Strains
  • Receptors, CCR7
  • Receptors, Chemokine / metabolism*
  • T-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • Transplantation, Homologous


  • Ccl19 protein, mouse
  • Ccl21c protein, mouse
  • Ccr7 protein, mouse
  • Chemokine CCL19
  • Chemokine CCL21
  • Chemokines, CC
  • Receptors, CCR7
  • Receptors, Chemokine