J Korean Soc Transplant.  2012 Sep;26(3):165-173. 10.4285/jkstn.2012.26.3.165.

The Role of Macrophages in Transplant Rejection

Affiliations
  • 1Transplantation Research Institute, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea. jcyjs@dreamwiz.com
  • 2Department of Internal Medicine, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
  • 3Transplantation Center, Seoul National University Hospital, Seoul, Korea.

Abstract

Macrophage accumulation has been recognized as a feature of allograft rejection, however, the role of macrophages in rejection remains underappreciated. Macrophages are present within graft tissues throughout the lifespan of the graft, including acute rejection episodes. Recent advances in macrophage biology have demonstrated that different types of macrophages in grafts serve a range of functions, including promotion or attenuation of inflammation, participation in innate and adaptive immune responses, and mediation of tissue injury, fibrosis, and tissue repair. Macrophages contribute to both the innate and acquired arms of the alloimmune response, and, thus, may be involved in all aspects of acute and chronic allograft rejection. Macrophages are also involved in hyperacute and acute vascular rejection of xenografts. A deeper understanding of how macrophages accumulate within grafts and of the factors that control differentiation and function of these cells could lead to identification of novel therapeutic targets in transplantation.

Keyword

Homologous transplantation; Macrophages; Graft rejection; Transplantation; Heterologous transplantation
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