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Impact of Dendritic Cells on Vascular Biology

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Dendritic cells (DCs) are a key component of the immune system which are capable of sampling antigen and present them to immune effector cells. By modulating the degree and quality of response of these effector cells, DCs represent a decisive element at the earliest phases of any given immune reaction. Recently, the presence of a vascular associated DC system has been described within the vascular wall, more precisely, in the intima and adventitia. These DCs exert important (patho-) physiological functions. For instance, DCs are functional at early stages of atherosclerosis and they contribute to atheroprogression and plaque destabilization. Furthermore, DCs are involved in other inflammatory vascular diseases such as giant cell arteriitis and idiopathic pulmonary hypertension. This review describes recent advances in the physiology and pathophysiology of dendritic cells associated with the vascular wall.

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Keywords: Endothelium; atherosclerosis; dendritic cells; inflammation

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: February 1, 2009

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  • Current Hypertension Reviews publishes frontier reviews on all the latest advances on hypertension and its related areas e.g. nephrology, clinical care, and therapy. The journal's aim is to publish the highest quality review articles dedicated to clinical research in the field. The journal is essential reading for all clinicians and researchers in the field of hypertension.
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