Coexpression of CD163 and CD141 identifies human circulating IL-10-producing dendritic cells (DC-10)

Cell Mol Immunol. 2020 Jan;17(1):95-107. doi: 10.1038/s41423-019-0218-0. Epub 2019 Mar 6.


Tolerogenic dendritic cells (DCs) are key players in maintaining immunological homeostasis, dampening immune responses, and promoting tolerance. DC-10, a tolerogenic population of human IL-10-producing DCs characterized by the expression of HLA-G and ILT4, play a pivotal role in promoting tolerance via T regulatory type 1 (Tr1) cells. Thus far, the absence of markers that uniquely identify DC-10 has limited in vivo studies. By in vitro gene expression profiling of differentiated human DCs, we identified CD141 and CD163 as surface markers for DC-10. The coexpression of CD141 and CD163 in combination with CD14 and CD16 enables the ex vivo isolation of DC-10 from the peripheral blood. CD14+CD16+CD141+CD163+ cells isolated from the peripheral blood of healthy subjects (ex vivo DC-10) produced spontaneously and upon activation of IL-10 and limited levels of IL-12. Moreover, in vitro stimulation of allogeneic naive CD4+ T cells with ex vivo DC-10 induced the differentiation of alloantigen-specific CD49b+LAG-3+ Tr1 cells. Finally, ex vivo DC-10 and in vitro generated DC-10 exhibited a similar transcriptional profile, which are characterized by an anti-inflammatory and pro-tolerogenic signature. These results provide new insights into the phenotype and molecular signature of DC-10 and highlight the tolerogenic properties of circulating DC-10. These findings open the opportunity to track DC-10 in vivo and to define their role in physiological and pathological settings.

Keywords: Dendritic cells; IL-10; T regulatory type 1 (Tr1) cells; Tolerance.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Antigens, CD / immunology*
  • Antigens, Differentiation, Myelomonocytic / immunology*
  • Dendritic Cells / cytology
  • Dendritic Cells / immunology*
  • Gene Expression Regulation / immunology*
  • Humans
  • Interleukin-10 / immunology*
  • Receptors, Cell Surface / immunology*
  • T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory / cytology
  • T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory / immunology
  • Thrombomodulin / immunology*


  • Antigens, CD
  • Antigens, Differentiation, Myelomonocytic
  • CD163 antigen
  • IL10 protein, human
  • Receptors, Cell Surface
  • THBD protein, human
  • Thrombomodulin
  • Interleukin-10