Migration of Langerhans cells in an in vitro organ culture system: IL-6 and TNF-α are partially responsible for migration into the epidermis

Atsushi Saitoh, Nami Yasaka, Atsushi Osada, Koichiro Nakamura, Masutaka Furue, Kunihiko Tamaki

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Although it is well established that epidermal Langerhans cells (LC) originate from bone marrow, little is known about the mechanism of this migration into the epidermis from bone marrow. In order to clarify the mechanism of this migration, we constructed an in vitro model. LC were depleted by daily topical application of clobetazole propionate (CP) solution onto the ear of Balb/c mice. Seven days later, ear skin was cut off, separated and co-cultured dermal-side-up with syngeneic (Balb/c), semisyngeneic ((C3H x Balb/c)F1), or allogeneic (C3H) epidermal cells (EC) for 3 days. We found (1) that a marked migration of donor LC into the recipient epidermis was observed in the LC-depleted skin, (2) that only syngeneic LC actively migrated into the recipient epidermis; however, the migration of semisyngeneic and allogeneic LC was detected at very low levels, (3) that the migratory capacity of donor LC was directly proved by a biolabeling technique using donor EC labeled with PKH-26, and (4) that anti- IL-6 and anti-TNF-α antibodies inhibited the migration of donor LC into the recipient epidermis. These data demonstrate that the resident LC have the potential to traffic through the dermis into the epidermis in a highly syngeneic-specific fashion, and that IL-6 and TNF-α are partially responsible for promoting this migration.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)166-174
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Dermatological Science
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Apr 1 1999


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Dermatology

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