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Journal of Immunology Research
Volume 2015, Article ID 856707, 15 pages
Review Article

Tolerogenic Dendritic Cells on Transplantation: Immunotherapy Based on Second Signal Blockage

1Department of Biomedical Science, Faculty of Americana (FAM), 13477-360 Americana, SP, Brazil
2Medical School, University of Campinas (UNICAMP), 13083-887 Campinas, SP, Brazil
3Department of Genetics, Evolution and Bioagents, Institute of Biology, University of Campinas (UNICAMP), 13083-970 Campinas, SP, Brazil
4Department of Biochemistry and Microbiology, Institute of Biosciences, Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP), 13506-900 Rio Claro, SP, Brazil

Received 24 April 2015; Revised 23 June 2015; Accepted 29 June 2015

Academic Editor: Anil Shanker

Copyright © 2015 Priscila de Matos Silva et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Dendritic cells (DCs), the most important professional antigen-presenting cells (APC), play crucial role in both immunity and tolerance. It is well known that DCs are able to mount immune responses against foreign antigens and simultaneously tolerate self-antigens. Since DCs can be modulated depending on the surrounding microenvironment, they can act as a bridge between innate and adaptive immunity. However, the mechanisms that support this dual role are not entirely clear. Recent studies have shown that DCs can be manipulated ex vivo in order to trigger their tolerogenic profile, what can be a tool to be used in clinical trials aiming the treatment of various diseases and the prevention of transplant rejection. In this sense, the blockage of costimulatory molecules on DC, in the attempt of inhibiting the second signal in the immunological synapse, can be considered as one of the main strategies under development. This review brings an update on current therapies using tolerogenic dendritic cells modulated with costimulatory blockers with the aim of reducing transplant rejection. However, although there are current clinical trials using tolerogenic DC to treat allograft rejection, the actual challenge is to modulate these cells in order to maintain a permanent tolerogenic profile.