Transport and uptake of immunogenic lipids.

Molecular immunology

PubMedID: 23174352

Freigang S, Kain L, Teyton L. Transport and uptake of immunogenic lipids. Mol Immunol. 2013;55(2):179-81.
An increasing number of lipid mediators have been identified as key modulators of immunity. Among these is a family of glycolipids capable of cellular uptake, loading onto the MHC-like molecule CD1d and stimulation of NKT cells. NKT cells are particularly interesting because they bridge innate and adaptive immunity by coordinating the early events of dendritic cell maturation, recruitment of NK cells, CD4 and CD8 T cells, and B cells at the site of microbial injury. As such, their therapeutic manipulation could be of the greatest interest in vaccine design or active immunotherapy. However, the use of NKT cells as cellular adjuvant of immunity in the clinic will require a better knowledge of the pharmacology of lipid agonists in order to optimize their action and avoid potential unseen off-target effects. We have been studying extracellular transport and cellular uptake of NKT agonists for the past few years. This field is confronted to a very limited prior knowledge and a small set of usable tools. New technology must be put in place and adapted to answering basic immunology questions related to NKT cells. The intimate link between the pharmacology of glycolipids and lipid metabolism makes us believe that great variations of bioactivity could be seen in the general population when NKT agonists are used therapeutically.