Pathogens target DC-SIGN to influence their fate DC-SIGN functions as a pathogen receptor with broad specificity

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Abstract:

Geijtenbeek TBH, van Kooyk Y. Pathogens target DC-SIGN to influence their fate. DC-SIGN functions as a pathogen receptor with broad specificity. APMIS 2003;111:698–714.

Dendritic cells (DC) are vital in the defense against pathogens. To sense pathogens DC express pathogen recognition receptors such as toll-like receptors (TLR) and C-type lectins that recognize different fragments of pathogens, and subsequently activate or present pathogen fragments to T cells. It is now becoming evident that some pathogens subvert DC functions to escape immune surveillance. HIV-1 targets the DC-specific C-type lectin DC-SIGN to hijack DC for viral dissemination. HIV-1 binding to DC-SIGN protects HIV-1 from antigen processing and facilitates its transport to lymphoid tissues, where DC-SIGN promotes HIV-1 infection of T cells. Recent studies demonstrate that DC-SIGN is a more universal pathogen receptor that also recognizes Ebola, cytomegalovirus and mycobacteria. Mycobacterium tuberculosis targets DC-SIGN by a mechanism that is distinct from that of HIV-1, leading to inhibition of the immunostimulatory function of DC and pathogen survival. Thus, a better understanding of DC-SIGN-pathogen interactions and their effects on DC function is necessary to combat infections.

Keywords: C-type lectins; DC-SIGN; Dendritic cells; HIV-1; Mycobacteria; immune escape; pathogens

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1034/j.1600-0463.2003.11107803.x

Affiliations: Departments of Molecular Cell Biology, Vrije Universiteit Medical Center Amsterdam, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Publication date: July 1, 2003

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