Dendritic cell functions: Learning from microbial evasion strategies

Semin Immunol. 2015 Mar;27(2):119-24. doi: 10.1016/j.smim.2015.03.012. Epub 2015 Apr 2.


Dendritic cells (DCs) are specialized antigen presenting cells (APC) that are fundamental to initiate both immunity and tolerance. DCs play a 'sentinel' role to protect our body from potential pathogens and induce tolerogenic responses toward harmless antigens. The flexibility of DCs or macrophages to adapt to the environment and to respond accordingly can be hijacked by pathogens for their own interest to transform a potentially immunogenic APC into a tolerogenic cell with clear consequences in pathogen clearance. While these immune evasion mechanisms can be detrimental for the host, they can highlight important molecular pathways in DCs necessary for their function. In this review we will mention several mechanisms employed by pathogens to evade DC patrolling function.

Keywords: Dendritic cells; Immune evasion; Pathogens; Tolerance.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bacteria / immunology
  • Dendritic Cells / cytology
  • Dendritic Cells / immunology*
  • Humans
  • Immune Evasion
  • Immune Tolerance
  • Macrophages / immunology
  • Phagocytosis
  • T-Lymphocytes / immunology