β-Defensins: Linking Innate and Adaptive Immunity Through Dendritic and T Cell CCR6

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Science  15 Oct 1999:
Vol. 286, Issue 5439, pp. 525-528
DOI: 10.1126/science.286.5439.525

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Defensins contribute to host defense by disrupting the cytoplasmic membrane of microorganisms. This report shows that human β-defensins are also chemotactic for immature dendritic cells and memory T cells. Human β-defensin was selectively chemotactic for cells stably transfected to express human CCR6, a chemokine receptor preferentially expressed by immature dendritic cells and memory T cells. The β-defensin–induced chemotaxis was sensitive to pertussis toxin and inhibited by antibodies to CCR6. The binding of iodinated LARC, the chemokine ligand for CCR6, to CCR6-transfected cells was competitively displaced by β-defensin. Thus, β-defensins may promote adaptive immune responses by recruiting dendritic and T cells to the site of microbial invasion through interaction with CCR6.

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