Follicular dendritic cell networks of primary follicles and germinal centers: phenotype and function

Semin Immunol. 2008 Feb;20(1):14-25. doi: 10.1016/j.smim.2007.12.001. Epub 2008 Feb 7.


Follicular dendritic cells (FDCs) were identified decades ago by their ability to retain immune complexes and more recent findings indicate that they are a source of B cell attractants and trophic factors. New imaging studies have shown that B cells closely associate with their dendritic processes during migration. Here we will review the properties of these specialized follicular stromal cells and provide an update on the requirements for their maturation into phenotypically distinct cells within germinal center light and dark zones. We will then discuss current understanding of how they help support the B cell immune response.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibody Formation
  • Antigen Presentation*
  • Antigen-Antibody Complex / immunology
  • Antigen-Antibody Complex / metabolism
  • Antigens, Differentiation
  • B-Lymphocytes / immunology*
  • Biological Transport, Active / immunology
  • Dendritic Cells, Follicular / cytology
  • Dendritic Cells, Follicular / immunology*
  • Germinal Center / cytology
  • Germinal Center / immunology*
  • Humans
  • Immunologic Memory*
  • Mice
  • Paracrine Communication*
  • Rats
  • Receptors, IgE / immunology
  • Receptors, IgG / immunology
  • Stromal Cells / immunology


  • Antigen-Antibody Complex
  • Antigens, Differentiation
  • Receptors, IgE
  • Receptors, IgG