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Papers of the Week

Papers: 25 Mar 2023 - 31 Mar 2023

Basic Science

In Vitro Studies, Molecular/Cellular, Neurobiology

2023 Mar 31





Editor's Pick

Multimodal control of dendritic cell functions by nociceptors.


Hanč P, Gonzalez RJ, Mazo IB, Wang Y, Lambert T, Ortiz G, Miller EW, von Andrian UH


It is known that interactions between nociceptors and dendritic cells (DCs) can modulate immune responses in barrier tissues. However, our understanding of the underlying communication frameworks remains rudimentary. Here, we show that nociceptors control DCs in three molecularly distinct ways. First, nociceptors release the calcitonin gene-related peptide that imparts a distinct transcriptional profile on steady-state DCs characterized by expression of pro-interleukin-1β and other genes implicated in DC sentinel functions. Second, nociceptor activation induces contact-dependent calcium fluxes and membrane depolarization in DCs and enhances their production of proinflammatory cytokines when stimulated. Finally, nociceptor-derived chemokine CCL2 contributes to the orchestration of DC-dependent local inflammation and the induction of adaptive responses against skin-acquired antigens. Thus, the combined actions of nociceptor-derived chemokines, neuropeptides, and electrical activity fine-tune DC responses in barrier tissues.