The antibody alemtuzumab (anti-CD52) is effective in preventing acute graft-versus-host disease (GvHD) after allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (aHSCT). As well as depleting donor T cells, alemtuzumab may also work by targeting host dendritic cells (DC). To determine whether this second mechanism of action is significant, we investigated the effects of intravenous alemtuzumab by comparing skin and blood DC numbers of patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia, before and after a 4-week course of alemtuzumab treatment. Although skin DC express CD52, the epitope is only weakly detectable and their numbers were not consistently reduced by alemtuzumab. In contrast, circulating blood DC, with stronger CD52 expression, were invariably diminished by alemtuzumab. Because DC depletion in the transplant recipient remains a promising approach for GvHD prophylaxis and therapy, more potent techniques, such as an antibody of different specificity, may be required for effective DC eradication in GvHD target organs.