2006 Dendritic Cells
Dendritic cells (DCs) play an initiating role in immune responses and have been hypothesized as potential mediators of autoimmunity along with B cells. While earlier studies on DCs were hampered by their low frequency and lack of specific reagents for their identification, the Erikson lab is using a novel mouse model where DCs can be readily recognized, expanded, and isolated for further investigation.
With this innovative tool they are investigating the influence of DCs directly on B cells in vitro and on the regulation of immune responses in vivo. Their goal is to begin to tease apart the complex interactions between DCs and other immune cells that ultimately result in B cell mediated autoimmune pathology.