UNIT 16.1 Choosing and Preparing Antigen-Presenting Cells

  1. Clifford V. Harding,
  2. David Canaday,
  3. Lakshmi Ramachandra

Published Online: 1 FEB 2010

DOI: 10.1002/0471142735.im1601s88

Current Protocols in Immunology

Current Protocols in Immunology

How to Cite

Harding, C. V., Canaday, D. and Ramachandra, L. 2010. Choosing and Preparing Antigen-Presenting Cells. Current Protocols in Immunology. 88:16.1:16.1.1–16.1.30.

Author Information

  1. Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 1 FEB 2010
  2. Published Print: FEB 2010


The first issue in selecting a system for antigen-presentation experiments is to define the appropriate type of antigen-presenting cell (APC) to study. For some experiments, crude preparations such as splenocytes or peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) may suffice to provide APC function for stimulating T cells. This unit develops approaches for preparation of more defined APC populations, including dendritic cells (DCs), macrophages, and B lymphocytes, the three types of “professional” APC. Each of these cell types exists in different stages of differentiation, maturation, and activation, or in some cases different lineages. For example, dendritic cells may be divided into subsets, including myeloid DCs (mDCs) and plasmacytoid DCs (pDCs). Each APC type has an important antigen-presentation function, although they contribute to different aspects of the immune response. Therefore, selection of an APC type for study must include consideration of the stage or aspect of immune response that is to be modeled in the experiment. Curr. Protoc. Immunol. 88:16.1.1-16.1.30. © 2010 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.


  • antigen-presenting cells;
  • antigen processing;
  • dendritic cells;
  • macrophages;
  • B lymphocytes;
  • PBMCs;
  • monocytes