Unconventional antigen-presenting cells in the induction of peripheral CD8(+) T cell tolerance

J Leukoc Biol. 2009 Oct;86(4):795-801. doi: 10.1189/jlb.0509362. Epub 2009 Aug 3.


Bone marrow-derived APCs are considered the predominant cell type involved in the induction and maintenance of T cell tolerance in vivo. In the periphery, cross-presentation of self-antigens by DCs, in particular, CD8alpha(+) DCs, has been the most discussed mechanism underlying the induction of CD8(+) T cell tolerance against self. However, nonhematopoietic APCs in the liver, skin, parenchymal tissues, and lymph nodes can also present self- and exogenous antigens to CD8(+) T cells under steady-state conditions. Although far surpassed by their DC counterparts in their ability to stimulate T cell responses, these unconventional APCs have been shown to play a role in the induction, maintenance, and regulation of peripheral CD8(+) T cell tolerance by a multitude of mechanisms. In this review, we will discuss the different nonhematopoietic cells that have been shown to present tissue-specific or exogenous antigens to naïve CD8(+) T cells, thereby contributing to the regulation of T cell responses in the periphery.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bone Marrow Cells / cytology
  • Bone Marrow Cells / immunology
  • CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes / cytology
  • CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes / immunology*
  • Dendritic Cells / cytology
  • Dendritic Cells / immunology*
  • Humans
  • Liver / cytology
  • Liver / immunology
  • Lymph Nodes / cytology
  • Lymph Nodes / immunology
  • Organ Specificity / physiology
  • Self Tolerance / physiology*
  • Skin / cytology
  • Skin / immunology