Skip to main content

The Role of Annexin A5 in the Modulation of the Immune Response Against Dying and Dead Cells

Buy Article:

$63.00 plus tax (Refund Policy)


Annexins are characterized by the ability to bind phospholipids of membranes in the presence of Ca2+. Annexin A5 represents a typical member of this protein family and is a natural occurring highly specific ligand for phosphatidylserine (PS). The exposure of PS is one major “eat me” signal for phagocytes of apoptotic and necrotic cells. Apoptotic cells are normally cleared via an anti-inflammatory pathway. In contrast, the uptake and removal of necrotic cells normally involves inflammation and an immune response. Interestingly, the lack of endogenous annexin A5 also leads to a reduced inflammatory potential of necrotic cells. Annexin A5 may interfere in vivo with the immunosuppressive effects of apoptotic cells since it preferentially binds PS with high affinity and inhibits apoptotic cell uptake by macrophages. In this review we focus on how defects in the clearance process can lead to chronic autoimmunity. Furthermore, the role of annexin A5 as important adjuvant for apoptotic cell-based tumour vaccines is discussed. The mechanism of how the immunogenicity of apoptotic cells can be restored by blocking their PS-dependent clearance is outlined in detail. Taken together, annexin A5 is an important modulator of the immune response against PSexposing particles like apoptotic cells, necrotic cells, and certain viruses.

Keywords: Annexin A5; apoptotic cells; autoimmunity; clearance; immunogenicity; macrophages; necrotic cells; tumour vaccine

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Institute for Clinical Immunology and Exp. Medicine I, Friedrich-Alexander-University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, Gluckstrasse 4a and 6, 91054 Erlangen, Germany.

Publication date: February 1, 2007

More about this publication?
  • Current Medicinal Chemistry covers all the latest and outstanding developments in medicinal chemistry and rational drug design. Each issue contains a series of timely in-depth reviews written by leaders in the field covering a range of the current topics in medicinal chemistry. Current Medicinal Chemistry is an essential journal for every medicinal chemist who wishes to be kept informed and up-to-date with the latest and most important developments.

Access Key

Free Content
Free content
New Content
New content
Open Access Content
Open access content
Partial Open Access Content
Partial Open access content
Subscribed Content
Subscribed content
Free Trial Content
Free trial content
Cookie Policy
Cookie Policy
Ingenta Connect website makes use of cookies so as to keep track of data that you have filled in. I am Happy with this Find out more