font color="red" size="3">Endothelial heparan sulfate is required for the chemokine-medicated cell adhesion
Endothelial heparan sulfate antagonizes L-selectin/PNAd-mediated cell rolling
Loss of endothelial heparan sulfate impairs immune response and homeostasis.
Heparan sulfate can bind several adhesion molecules involved in lymphocyte trafficking. However, the in vivo function of endothelial heparan sulfate in lymphocyte homing and stimulation of the immune response has not been elucidated. Here, we generated mutant mice deficient in the enzyme Ext1, which is required for heparan sulfate synthesis, in a Tek-dependent and inducible manner. Chemokine presentation was diminished in the mutant mice, causing the lack of appropriate integrin-mediated adhesion, and resulted in a marked decrease in lymphocyte sticking to high endothelial venules and in recruitment of resident dendritic cells through lymphatic vessels to the lymph nodes. As a consequence, mutant mice displayed a severe impairment in lymphocyte homing and a compromised contact hypersensitivity response. By contrast, lymphocyte rolling was increased because of loss of electrostatic repulsion by heparan sulfate. These results demonstrate critical roles of endothelial heparan sulfate in immune surveillance and immune response generation.
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