Comparison of two in vitro dendritic cell maturation models for screening contact sensitizers using a panel of methacrylates.
Blomberg - van der Flier, B.M.E. von
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Allergen-induced emigration and maturation of dendritic cells (DC) are pivotal steps in sparking off allergic contact dermatitis. In vitro models, reflecting these steps, may provide tools for assessment of sensitizing capacities of putative contact allergens. Here, we evaluated the applicability of such models for a panel of methacrylate congeners, the sensitizing properties of which were established previously in clinical and experimental animal studies. First, using interleukin-4 (IL-4)/granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF)-induced, blood monocyte-derived DC, hapten-induced up-regulation of maturation/ activation markers, including CD80, CD83, CD86, chemokine receptors CXCR4 and CCR5, as well as the drug resistance related molecules P-glycoprotein (Pgp) and lung resistance protein (LRP), were monitored by flow cytometry. Of note, whereas CD86 and CXCR4 were most sensitive in discriminating between the contact sensitizers and irritants included in the panel, i.e. sodium dodecyl sulphate (SDS) and croton oil (CO), assessment of CD83 and LRP expression reflected the relatively lower sensitizing capacity of methyl methacrylate. Second, using ex vivo skin explant cultures, allergen-induced LC migration from epidermal to basal membranous and dermal skin structures was most reliably monitored by CDla, as compared with Pgp, LRP, HLA-DR or CD54 staining. The extent of CD1a+ LC migration was found to closely correlate with the sensitizing capacities of the panel of test compounds. These results support the view that both in vitro models can provide valuable data on contact sensitizing properties, and add chemokine receptors and drug resistance related molecules to the list of DC membrane markers revealing allergenic signaling.