Cyclical expression of L-selectin (CD62L) by recirculating T cells

Antje Klinger, Andreas Gebert, Katja Bieber, Kathrin Kalies, Ann Ager, Eric B. Bel, Jürgen Westermann*

*Korrespondierende/r Autor/-in für diese Arbeit
17 Zitate (Scopus)


L-Selectin (CD62L) mediates T-cell entry into lymph nodes. Whether the microenvironment modulates L-selectin expression of T cells during diapedesis and transit is unknown. Therefore, L-selectin expression was determined quantitatively on circulating T cells in blood, lymph nodes and thoracic duct by confocal laser scanning microscopy. We show that in contrast to leukocyte function-associated antigen-1 (CD11a/CD18) and ICAM-1 (CD54), L-selectin expression is cyclically expressed on recirculating T cells. It is reduced to ∼30% of the blood value during entry across high endothelial venules. Within lymph nodes, CD4+ T-cell subsets maintain reduced L-selectin expression at a similar level in all compartments (T-cell zone, B-cell zone and medulla). After exit, L-selectin is re-expressed to levels comparable to those of T cells in blood. Apparently, L-selectin levels are not only down-regulated during T-cell activation but also routinely reduced while transmigrating within lymph nodes. L-Selectin down-regulation seems to be ligand independent since it also occurs in the white pulp compartments of the spleen which lack classic L-selectin ligands such as GlyCAM-1 and CD34. In addition, T cells in non-lymphoid organs do not reveal reduced L-selectin levels. Thus, the ability of secondary lymphoid organs to reduce L-selectin expression of T cells prior to activation might be a prerequisite for their characteristic property to induce primary immune responses.

ZeitschriftInternational Immunology
Seiten (von - bis)443-455
PublikationsstatusVeröffentlicht - 08.04.2009

Strategische Forschungsbereiche und Zentren

  • Forschungsschwerpunkt: Gehirn, Hormone, Verhalten - Center for Brain, Behavior and Metabolism (CBBM)


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