CD14+ antigen-presenting cells in human dermis are less mature than their CD1a+ counterparts.Int Immunol. 2007 Nov; 19(11):1271-9.II
We recently demonstrated that three antigen-presenting cell (APC) subsets exist in the healthy human dermis, CD14(+) and CD1a(+) dermal APCs and migratory dermal Langerhans cells. Here, we extend these findings by defining CD208 as an exclusive marker of migratory dermal Langerhans cells, confirming that migratory dermal Langerhans cells (CD1a(high) CD207(+) CD208(+)) and CD1a(+) dermal APCs (CD1a(mid) CD207(-) CD208(-)) are two distinct APC populations. Using flow cytometry and multicolor fluorescence immunohistochemistry, we demonstrated that there were striking differences between CD1a(+) and CD14(+) dermal APCs in their expression of pattern recognition receptors and maturation markers. Expression of Toll-like receptor (TLR) 2, CD206 and CD209 was largely restricted to CD14(+) dermal APCs. Consistent with these observations, most CD14(+) dermal APCs expressed an immature phenotype when compared with CD1a(+) dermal APCs, which expressed high levels of the maturation marker CD83 on their cell surface. However, a subset of CD14(+) dermal APCs also expressed cell-surface CD83, associated with a loss of cell-surface TLR2, suggesting that they have the capacity to mature. CD14(+) dermal APCs are therefore the dominant cutaneous APC population capable of sensing ligands recognized by CD206, CD209 and TLR2 and subsequently may have the potential to mature. CD68 expression was largely restricted to a subset of CD14(+) dermal APCs, while both CD14(+) and CD1a(+) dermal APCs expressed CD11b and CD11c. These findings have important implications for understanding cutaneous immune responses in humans and for the optimization of vaccine delivery via the skin.