Multichannel fluorescence spinning disk microscopy reveals early endogenous CD4 T cell recruitment in contact sensitivity via complement

M. Ursula Norman, Sara Hulliger, Pina Colarusso, Paul Kubes

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32 Citations (Scopus)


Contact sensitivity (CS) is one of the primary in vivo models of T cell-mediated inflammation. The presence of CS-initiating CD4 T lymphocytes at the time of challenge is essential for transfer and full development of the late phase CS inflammatory response. From this observation investigators have speculated that early recruitment of CD4 T cells to the site of challenge must occur. Moreover, there must be rapid synthesis/release and disappearance of an important mediator during the first hours after hapten challenge. Using spinning disk confocal microscopy, we observed the very early effector events of the immune response. Simultaneous, real-time visualization of predominant neutrophil and extremely rare CD4 T cell trafficking in the challenged skin vasculature was noted (one rolling CD4 T cell for every 10-18 rolling and adherent neutrophils). We demonstrate that neutrophil adhesion during the early CS response was reduced in C5a receptor-deficient (C5aR-/-) mice or leukotriene B4 receptor antagonist-treated mice, whereas CD4 T cell recruitment was only inhibited in C5aR-/- mice. In line with these observations, leukocyte infiltration and the associated tissue damage were significantly reduced in C5aR-/- mice but not in leukotriene B 4 receptor antagonist-treated wild-type mice 24 h after challenge. C5a receptor expression on T cells and not on tissue resident cells was important for the development of a CS response. Thus, by using spinning disk confocal microscopy we visualized the early events of an adaptive immune response and identified the rare but essential recruitment of CD4 T cells via the complement pathway.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)510-521
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Immunology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2008

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