Tissue-resident macrophages promote extracellular matrix homeostasis in the mammary gland stroma of nulliparous mice.Elife. 2020 Jun 01; 9E
Tissue-resident macrophages in the mammary gland are found in close association with epithelial structures and within the adipose stroma, and are important for mammary gland development and tissue homeostasis. Macrophages have been linked to ductal development in the virgin mammary gland, but less is known regarding the effects of macrophages on the adipose stroma. Using transcriptional profiling and single-cell RNA sequencing approaches, we identify a distinct resident stromal macrophage subpopulation within the mouse nulliparous mammary gland that is characterized by the expression of Lyve-1, a receptor for the extracellular matrix (ECM) component hyaluronan. This subpopulation is enriched in genes associated with ECM remodeling and is specifically associated with hyaluronan-rich regions within the adipose stroma and fibrous capsule of the virgin mammary gland. Furthermore, macrophage depletion leads to enhanced accumulation of hyaluronan-associated ECM in the adipose-associated stroma, indicating that resident macrophages are important for maintaining homeostasis within the nulliparous mammary gland stroma.