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Defensins are endogenous, small, cysteine-rich antimicrobial peptides that are produced by leukocytes and epithelial cells. Substantial evidence accumulated in recent years indicates that mammalian defensins are multifunctional and, by interacting with host cell receptor(s), participate in both the innate and adaptive antimicrobial immunity of the host. A(More)
Synthetic oligonucleotides (ODN) expressing CpG motifs mimic the ability of bacterial DNA to trigger the innate immune system via TLR9. Plasmacytoid dendritic cells (pDCs) make a critical contribution to the ensuing immune response. This work examines the induction of antiviral (IFN-β) and pro-inflammatory (IL-6) cytokines by CpG-stimulated human pDCs and(More)
Alarmins are endogenous mediators capable of promoting the recruitment and activation of antigen-presenting cells (APCs), including dendritic cells (DCs), that can potentially alert host defense against danger signals. However, the relevance of alarmins to the induction of adaptive immune responses remains to be demonstrated. In this study, we report the(More)
In response to infection and/or tissue injury, cells of the host innate immune system rapidly produce a variety of structurally distinct mediators (we elect to call alarmins) that not only function as potent effectors of innate defense but also act to alarm the immune system by promoting the recruitment and activation of host leukocytes through interaction(More)
Neutrophils are the first major population of leukocyte to infiltrate infected or injured tissues and are crucial for initiating host innate defense and adaptive immunity. Although the contribution of neutrophils to innate immune defense is mediated predominantly by phagocytosis and killing of microorganisms, neutrophils also participate in the induction of(More)
The selective killing of cancer cells without toxicity to normal nontransformed cells is an idealized goal of cancer therapy. Thus, there has been much interest in tumor necrosis factor-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL), a protein that appears to selectively kill cancer cells. TRAIL has been reported to trigger apoptosis and under some(More)
Granulysin (GNLY), an antimicrobial protein present in the granules of human cytotoxic T lymphocytes and natural killer (NK) cells, is produced as an intact 15-kDa form that is cleaved to yield a 9-kDa form. Alarmins are endogenous mediators that can induce recruitment and activation of antigen-presenting cells (APCs) and consequently promote the generation(More)
Alarmins are endogenous, constitutively available, damage-associated molecular patterns that upon release can mobilize and activate various leukocytes for the induction of innate and adaptive immune responses. For our immune system to function appropriately, it relies on navigating various leukocytes to distinct places at the right time. The direction of(More)
Lactoferrin is an 80-kDa iron-binding protein present at high concentrations in milk and in the granules of neutrophils. It possesses multiple activities, including antibacterial, antiviral, antifungal, and even antitumor effects. Most of its antimicrobial effects are due to direct interaction with pathogens, but a few reports show that it has direct(More)
Dendritic cells play a pivotal role in host immune defense, such as elimination of foreign pathogen and inhibition of tumorigenesis. In this paper, we report that [Gd@C(82)(OH)(22)](n) could induce phenotypic maturation of dendritic cells by stimulating DC production of cytokines including IL-12p70, upregulating DC co-stimulatory (CD80, CD83, and CD86) and(More)