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Microbe-dependent lymphatic migration of neutrophils modulates lymphocyte proliferation in lymph nodes

Hampton, HR;Bailey, J;Tomura, M;Brink, R;Chtanova, T;

Neutrophil recruitment to the site of injury is an essential first step of an anti-bacterial response. However, little is known about the basis for and relevance of neutrophil migration from inflamed tissue into lymphoid organs. We established a photoconversion-based system to monitor the fate of neutrophils recruited to inflamed skin. While neutrophils are efficiently recruited to sites of both microbial and sterile lesions, subsequent re-localization to draining lymph nodes happens only when bacteria are present in the primary lesion. Skin egress of neutrophils occurs via lymphatic vessels and is dependent on CD11b and CXCR4 but not CCR7. Neutrophils are the predominant immune cell to migrate from inflamed skin into lymph nodes where they augment lymphocyte proliferation. Furthermore, inhibition of neutrophil migration from skin reduces T-cell proliferation in draining lymph nodes. Thus neutrophils mediate rapid cellular communication between the initial injury site and secondary lymphoid organs and modulate immune responsiveness.