Antigen Presentation by Gut Epithelial Cells: Secretion by Rat Enterocytes of a Factor with IL-1-Like Activity
Evidence is emerging that the epithelial interface of the gut may play an important role in directing the type of immune response initiated towards enteric antigens. Soluble protein antigens are processed to constituent antigenic peptides during absorption from the lumen (1) and such processing may give rise to circulating fragments with greater tolerogenicity than the native protein (2). In addition to its antigen processing function, the epithelium may be directly involved in the presentation of absorbed antigen, and the local induction of immunoregulatory lymphocytes. Thus, fully differentiated absorptive epithelial cells (EC) isolated from the rat small intestine can present soluble protein antigens to immune lymph node T cells in vivo (3), causing them to proliferate and differentiate into antigen-specific suppressor cells (4).
KeywordsMuramyl Dipeptide Induction Culture Drain Lymph Node Cell Nylon Wool Column Absorptive Epithelial Cell
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- 1.Stem, M. and Walker, W.A., Am. J. Physiol. 246, G556, 1984.Google Scholar