Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 9767412
Immunology 1998 Jul;94(3):318-24
The discovery that bone marrow-derived mast cells can express major histocompatibility complex class II molecules and act as antigen-presenting cells prompted us to evaluate this function when antigen is internalized through fluid-phase endocytosis or via specific uptake by using IgG and IgE antibodies. This study was performed using a specific T-cell hybridoma developed against Lol p 1, the major allergen of grass pollen Lolium perenne. Expression of Fc gamma R and Fc epsilon RI by mast cells led us to investigate the influence of IgG- and IgE-targeted antigen on the antigen-presenting function of mast cells. Internalization of Lol p 1 through different specific IgG monoclonal antibodies (mAb) resulted in the activation of Lol p 1-specific T-cell hybridoma at concentrations about 100-fold less than that required for T-cell stimulation by uncomplexed antigen. IgE-complexed Lol p 1, which facilitates trapping of antigen by mast cells, induced an accelerated and more efficient antigen-presenting capacity of mast cells than that obtained with uncomplexed antigen. However, aggregation of anti-dinitrophenyl (DNP) IgE mAb by the irrelevant antigen DNP-human serum albumin did not substantially increase the capacity of mast cells to present Lol p 1 to T cells. This suggests that the mere aggregation of Fc epsilon RI is not sufficient for enhanced antigen presentation mediated by IgE. Tissue distribution and strategic location of mast cells at the mucosal barriers and their capacity to process the antigen through efficient fluid-phase pinocytosis as well as IgG- and IgE-dependent targeting of antigens provide mast cells with a prominent role in immune surveillance.