Research Article

Single-cell RNA-seq reveals new types of human blood dendritic cells, monocytes, and progenitors

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Science  21 Apr 2017:
Vol. 356, Issue 6335, eaah4573
DOI: 10.1126/science.aah4573

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What's in a drop of blood?

Blood contains many types of cells, including many immune system components. Immune cells used to be characterized by marker-based assays, but now classification relies on the genes that cells express. Villani et al. used deep sequencing at the single-cell level and unbiased clustering to define six dendritic cell and four monocyte populations. This refined analysis has identified, among others, a previously unknown dendritic cell population that potently activates T cells. Further cell culture revealed possible differentiation progenitors within the different cell populations.

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