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Constitutive Flt3 signaling impacts conventional dendritic cell function.
  • Justine Mintern,
  • Kayla Wilson,
  • Jose Villadangos
Justine Mintern
University of Melbourne

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Kayla Wilson
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Jose Villadangos
The University of Melbourne Department of Microbiology and Immunology
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The development of dendritic cells (DCs) depends on signaling via FMS-like tyrosine kinase 3 (Flt3) receptor. How Flt3 signaling impacts terminally differentiated DC function is unknown. This is important given the increasing interest in exploiting Flt3 for vaccination and tumor immunotherapy. Here, we examined DCs in mice harboring constitutively activated Flt3 (Flt3-ITD). Flt3ITD/ITD mice possessed expanded splenic DC subsets including plasmacytoid DC, conventional DC (cDC)1, cDC2, double positive (DP) cDC1 (CD11c+ CD8+ CD11b- CD103+ CD86+), noncanonical (NC) cDC1 (CD11c+ CD8+ CD11b- CD103- CD86-) and single positive (SP) cDC1 (CD11c+ CD8+ CD11b- CD103- CD86+). Outcomes of constitutive Flt3 signaling differed depending on the cDC subset examined. In comparison to wild type (WT) DCs, all Flt3ITD/ITD cDCs displayed an altered surface phenotype with changes in costimulatory molecules, major histocompatibility complex class I (MHC I) and II (MHC II). Cytokine secretion patterns, antigen uptake, antigen proteolysis and antigen presenting function differed between WT and Flt3ITD/ITD subsets, particularly cDC2. In summary, Flt3 signaling impacts the function of terminally differentiated cDCs with important consequences for antigen presentation.