Collagen I-induced dendritic cells activation is regulated by TNF-α production through down-regulation of IRF4
IFN regulatory factors (IRFs) are a family of transcription factors that play an essential role in the homeostasis and function of immune systems. Recent studies indicated that IRF-8 is critical for the development of CD11b(low)CD8alpha(+) conventional dendritic cells (DCs) and plasmacytoid DCs. Here we show that IRF-4 is important for CD11b(high)CD8alpha(-) conventional DCs. The development of CD11b(high) DCs from bone marrow of IRF-4(-/-) mice was severely impaired in two culture systems supplemented with either GM-CSF or Flt3-ligand. In the IRF-4(-/-) spleen, the number of CD4(+)CD8alpha(-) DCs, a major subset of CD11b(high) DCs, was severely reduced. IRF-4 and IRF-8 were expressed in the majority of CD11b(high)CD4(+)CD8alpha(-) DCs and CD11b(low)CD8alpha(+) DCs, respectively, in a mutually exclusive manner. These results imply that IRF-4 and IRF-8 selectively play critical roles in the development of the DC subsets that express them.