Frustrated phagocytosis on micro-patterned immune complexes to characterize lysosome movements in live macrophages

Front Immunol. 2011 Oct 12;2:51. doi: 10.3389/fimmu.2011.00051. eCollection 2011.


Lysosome mobilization is a key cellular process in phagocytes for bactericidal activities and trans-matrix migration. The molecular mechanisms that regulate lysosome mobilization are still poorly known. Lysosomes are hard to track as they move toward phagosomes throughout the cell volume. In order to anticipate cell regions where lysosomes are recruited to, human and RAW264.7 macrophages were seeded on surfaces that were micro-patterned with immune complexes (ICs) as 4 μm-side squares. Distances between IC patterns were adapted to optimize cell spreading in order to constrain lysosome movements mostly in two dimensions. FcΓ receptors triggered local frustrated phagocytosis, frustrated phagosomes appeared as rings of F-actin dots around the IC patterns as early as 5 min after cells made contact with the substratum. Frustrated phagosomes recruited actin-associated proteins (vinculin, paxillin, and gelsolin). The fusion of lysosomes with frustrated phagosomes was shown by the release of beta-hexosaminidase and the recruitment of Lamp1 to frustrated phagosomes. Lysosomes of RAW264.7 macrophages were labeled with cathepsin-D-mCherry to visualize their movements toward frustrated phagosomes. Lysosomes saltatory movements were markedly slowed down compared to cells layered on non-opsonized patterns. In addition, the linearity of the trajectories and the frequency and duration of contacts of lysosomes with frustrated phagosomes were measured. Our experimental set-up is the first step toward deciphering molecular mechanisms which are involved in lysosome movements in the cytoplasm (speed, directionality, and interaction with phagosomes), and opens the door to approaches such as RNA interference, pharmacological inhibition, or mutant expression.

Keywords: frustrated phagocytosis; lysosome; macrophages; micro-patterned immune complexes.