The role of complement in the development of maladaptive immunity in experimental allergic asthma is unclear. In this study, we show that C3a receptor (C3aR)-deficient mice are protected from the development of Th2 immunity in a model of house dust mite-induced asthma. C5a receptor (C5aR)-targeting of C3aR-deficient mice during allergen sensitization not only reversed the protective effect but enhanced Th2 cytokine production, airway inflammation, and airway responsiveness, suggesting that the reduced allergic phenotype in C3aR-deficient mice results from protective C5aR signaling. In support of this view, C5aR expression in C3aR-deficient pulmonary dendritic cells (DCs) was increased when compared with wild-type DCs. Moreover, C5aR targeting regulated the frequency of pulmonary plasmacytoid DCs expressing costimulatory molecules B7-H1 and B7-DC. Ex vivo targeting of B7-H1 and B7-DC increased Th2 cytokine production from T cells of wild-type but not of C5aR-targeted mice, suggesting a protective role for C5a through regulation of B7 molecule expression on plasmacytoid DCs.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy