MHC Class II Expression in Human Basophils: Induction and Lack of Functional Significance
AuthorVoskamp, AL; Prickett, SR; Mackay, F; Rolland, JM; O'Hehir, RE
Source TitlePLoS One
PublisherPUBLIC LIBRARY SCIENCE
University of Melbourne Author/sMackay, Fabienne
AffiliationMicrobiology and Immunology
Document TypeJournal Article
CitationsVoskamp, A. L., Prickett, S. R., Mackay, F., Rolland, J. M. & O'Hehir, R. E. (2013). MHC Class II Expression in Human Basophils: Induction and Lack of Functional Significance. PLOS ONE, 8 (12), https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0081777.
Access StatusOpen Access
The antigen-presenting abilities of basophils and their role in initiating a Th2 phenotype is a topic of current controversy. We aimed to determine whether human basophils can be induced to express MHC Class II and act as antigen presenting cells for T cell stimulation. Isolated human basophils were exposed to a panel of cytokines and TLR-ligands and assessed for MHC Class II expression. MHC Class II was expressed in up to 17% of isolated basophils following incubation with a combination of IL-3, IFN-γ and GM-CSF for 72 hours. Costimulatory molecules (CD80 and CD86) were expressed at very low levels after stimulation. Gene expression analysis of MHC Class II-positive basophils confirmed up-regulation of HLA-DR, HLA-DM, CD74 and Cathepsin S. However, MHC Class II expressing basophils were incapable of inducing antigen-specific T cell activation or proliferation. This is the first report of significant cytokine-induced MHC Class II up-regulation, at both RNA and protein level, in isolated human basophils. By testing stimulation with relevant T cell epitope peptide as well as whole antigen, the failure of MHC Class II expressing basophils to induce T cell response was shown not to be solely due to inefficient antigen uptake and/or processing.
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