Antigen-specific T lymphocytes regulate lipopolysaccharide-induced apoptosis of dendritic cells in vivo

J Immunol. 1998 Nov 1;161(9):4476-9.


The potent accessory properties of dendritic cells (DC) develop sequentially during a process termed "maturation." Splenic DC undergo functional maturation in vivo in response to the bacterial product LPS and migrate from the marginal zone to the T cell areas. The redistribution of fully mature DC, which present Ags encountered in the periphery, in the T cell area is likely to result in T cell priming. Unexpectedly, we found that DC rapidly die by apoptosis once they have entered the T cell zone. Injection of OVA peptide in OVA-specific, TCR-transgenic mice strongly delays the LPS-induced apoptosis of DC in situ. We conclude that mature DC are programmed to die unless they receive a survival signal from T cells and that the regulation of DC survival may be a mechanism aimed at controlling the initiation and the termination of the immune response.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Apoptosis / immunology*
  • Cell Communication
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Dendritic Cells / cytology
  • Dendritic Cells / drug effects*
  • Dendritic Cells / immunology
  • Female
  • Lipopolysaccharides / pharmacology*
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Mice, Transgenic
  • Ovalbumin / immunology
  • Specific Pathogen-Free Organisms
  • T-Lymphocyte Subsets / immunology*


  • Lipopolysaccharides
  • Ovalbumin