Frontiers in Bioscience-Landmark (FBL) is published by IMR Press from Volume 26 Issue 5 (2021). Previous articles were published by another publisher on a subscription basis, and they are hosted by IMR Press on imrpress.com as a courtesy and upon agreement with Frontiers in Bioscience.
While regulating a wide variety of immunologic responses, the precise immunologic functions of CD1d-restricted (NK) T cells are not well defined. Notably, In vitro activation of human NK T cell clones results in the secretion of multiple cytokines important for the recruitment and differentiation of myeloid dendritic cells (DC). Once differentiated, these DC strongly activate NK T cells. In humans, CD1d is expressed by myeloid DC and on tumor cells of this lineage. Another specialized myeloid antigen presenting cell, the epithelioid histiocyte seen in granulomatous inflammation, also expresses CD1d. Because myeloid DC are important regulators of Th1/Th2 T cell responses, cross talk between human NK T cells and myeloid DC would be expected to have significant impact on many immune responses. Consistent with this hypothesis, NK T cells are required for myeloid DC-controlled antitumor responses in mice, and regulate diabetes in nonobese diabetic (NOD) mouse by locally controlling the frequency and function of DC subsets. Thus, regulation of myeloid DC by NK T cells controls both the transition from innate to adaptive immunity and the Th-phenotype of subsequent T cell responses.