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Lack of effect of repeated suberythemal ultraviolet-B exposures on human blood dendritic subtypes

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Dendritic cells (DC) play a major role in the afferent immune response. They are found as a minor cell population in the blood as three main subtypes that can be distinguished phenotypically: plasmacytoid DC (PDC), and myeloid DC1 and 2 (MDC1 and 2). The aim of the study was to examine the effect of repeated whole-body suberythemal ultraviolet (UV) B irradiation on the percentages of DC subsets in the blood and skin, and to test for photoadaptation by the subsequent administration of a local erythemal UV dose. Methods:

Thirty subjects in each group were irradiated with either 0.7 personal minimal erythema dose (MED) UVB daily for 10 days (whole body), or for the 10 days followed by a single three MED UVB exposure of a local body site, or with the single three MED UVB exposure of a local body site only. Blood was collected before and after the exposures and the percentage of DC and DC subtypes assessed by flow cytometry. Skin biopsies were collected at the same times, and the number and position of the DC subsets examined by immunofluorescent microscopy. Results:

The whole-body repeated UVB irradiations did not result in a change in the blood DC (BDC) or the subsets percentages in the blood, except that there was a small but significant rise in the percentage of the MDC2 subset. No alteration occurred following the local erythemal UVB exposure. The total number of BDC in the skin was small, with the PDC being located mainly in the dermis and the myeloid subtypes mainly in the epidermis. No change in cutaneous numbers or distribution was revealed following the irradiation protocols. Conclusions:

Repeated whole-body suberythemal UVB irradiation does not cause a change in BDC or BDC subsets in the blood or skin, except for a small increase in the percentage of MDC2 in the blood. Local erythemal UVB irradiation does not alter the BDC subsets in blood or skin.

Keywords: blood dendritic cells; skin; ultraviolet B radiation

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Department of Dermatology and Venereology, Medical University of Lodz, Lodz, Poland, 2: Department of Dermatology, Basildon General Hospital, Essex, UK, 3: Department of Hematology, Medical University of Lodz, Lodz, Poland, and 4: Medical Microbiology, University of Edinburgh Medical School, Edinburgh, Scotland, UK

Publication date: 2005-10-01

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