CD83 represents an intriguing target for immunotherapy due to its preferential expression on mature DCs, the most efficient of antigen presenting cells. Based on its restricted expression pattern, structure, and the paucity of CD4+ T cells in CD83-deficient mice, multiple immunologically important functions for CD83 during immune responses have been proposed. Indeed, several studies have reported that CD83 blockade using soluble receptor constructs inhibits T cell responses in vitro and in vivo, can affect autoimmune disease development and progression, and can inhibit transplant rejection. However, others have not been able to reproduce some of these findings, and antigen presenting cells deficient in CD83 expression or expressing a mutated form of CD83 induce normal T cell responses in vitro. This review examines the controversy surrounding CD83 function, alleged CD83 ligands, the potential therapeutic utility of recombinant proteins targeting CD83 function, and the importance of soluble serum CD83. While the validity of multiple previous studies needs to be confirmed, CD83 remains a fascinating cell surface molecule with a unique pattern of expression that has multiple confirmed functions in regulating immune system development and function.