Indexed on: 11 Oct '07Published on: 11 Oct '07Published in: Blood
Following antigen acquisition and maturation, dendritic cells (DCs) disengage from the extracellular matrix, cross basement membranes, and travel to draining lymph nodes to activate T cells. CCR7 expression is necessary but not sufficient for the directional migration of DCs. Prostaglandin E2 (PGE2), present in inflammatory sites, induces DC migration, presumably by enacting a migration-permissive gene expression program. Since regulation of DC migration is highly important for their use in vaccination and therapy, we examined the PGE2-induced changes in the expression of metalloproteinases (MMPs). Our results indicate that PGE2 significantly up-regulates MMP-9 expression, induces both secreted and membrane-bound MMP-9, and that in turn, DC-derived MMP-9 is essential for DC chemotaxis in response to the CCR7 ligand CCL19, Matrigel migration, and in vivo migration in both wild-type and MMP-9-deficient hosts. We conclude that DCs matured within inflammatory sites require both CCR7 and PGE2-induced MMP-9 for their directional migration to draining lymph nodes.