C-type lectin DC-SIGN: an adhesion, signalling and antigen-uptake molecule that guides dendritic cells in immunity

Cell Signal. 2010 Oct;22(10):1397-405. doi: 10.1016/j.cellsig.2010.03.018. Epub 2010 Apr 2.


The dendritic cell-specific intercellular adhesion molecule-3-grabbing non-integrin (DC-SIGN) is a type II C-type lectin whose expression is restricted to the most potent antigen-presenting cells (APCs), the dendritic cells (DCs). In recent years, DC-SIGN has gained an exponential increase in attention because of its involvement in multiple aspects of immune function. Besides being an adhesion molecule, particularly in binding ICAM-2 and ICAM-3, it is also crucial in recognizing several endogenous and exogenous antigens. Additionally, the intracellular domain of DC-SIGN includes molecular motifs, which enable the activation of signal transduction pathways involving Raf-1 and subsequent modulation of DC-maturation status, through direct modification of nuclear factor Nf-kappaB in DCs. Upon DC-SIGN engagement by mannose- or fucose-containing oligosaccharides, the latter leads to a tailored Toll-like receptor signalling, resulting in an altered DC-cytokine profile and skewing of Th1/Th2 responses. In this article, we will discuss recent advances on a broad perspective concerning DC-SIGN structure, signalling and immune function.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Antigen Presentation
  • Cell Adhesion
  • Cell Adhesion Molecules / chemistry
  • Cell Adhesion Molecules / metabolism*
  • Dendritic Cells / immunology*
  • Immunity
  • Immunologic Surveillance
  • Lectins, C-Type / chemistry
  • Lectins, C-Type / metabolism*
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Receptors, Cell Surface / chemistry
  • Receptors, Cell Surface / metabolism*
  • Receptors, Pattern Recognition / metabolism
  • Signal Transduction*


  • Cell Adhesion Molecules
  • DC-specific ICAM-3 grabbing nonintegrin
  • Lectins, C-Type
  • Receptors, Cell Surface
  • Receptors, Pattern Recognition