Although the homing of lymphocytes to GALT has been extensively studied, little is known about how high endothelial venules (HEVs) within Peyer's patches (PPs) are patterned to display dominantly mucosal addressin cell adhesion molecule 1 (MAdCAM-1). In this study, we report that Nkx2-3-deficient mice show gradual loss of MAdCAM-1 in PPs postnatally and increased levels of mRNA for peripheral lymph node addressin (PNAd) backbone proteins as well as enhanced expression of MECA79 sulfated glycoepitope at the luminal aspect of HEVs, thus replacing MAdCAM-1 with PNAd. Induction of PNAd in mutant PPs requires lymphotoxin b receptor activity, and its upregulation needs the presence of mature T and B cells. Furthermore, treatment with MECA-79 anti-PNAd mAb in vivo effectively blocks lymphocyte homing to mutant PPs. Despite the replacement of MAdCAM-1 by PNAd in HEV endothelia, lymphocytes could efficiently home to PPs in mutant mice.We conclude that although Nkx2-3 activity controls the addressin balance of HEVs in GALT, the general HEV functionality is preserved independently from Nkx2-3, indicating a substantial plasticity in the specification of GALT HEV endothelium.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy