A CD34+ human cell line model of myeloid dendritic cell differentiation: Evidence for a CD14+CD11b+ Langerhans cell precursor

Saskia J.A.M. Santegoets, Allan J. Masterson, Pieter C. Van Der Sluis, Sinéad M. Lougheed, Donna M. Fluitsma, Alfons J.M. Van Den Eertwegh, Herbert M. Pinedo, Rik J. Scheper, Tanja D. De Gruijl

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The study of early events in dendritic cell (DC) differentiation is hampered by the lack of homogeneous primary cell systems that allow the study of cytokine-driven, transitional DC differentiation steps. The CD34+ acute myeloid leukemia cell line MUTZ-3 displays a unique ability to differentiate into interstitial DC (IDC) and Langerhans cells (LC) in a cytokine-dependent manner. Phenotypic characterization revealed MUTZ-3 to consist of three distinct subpopulations. Small CD34+CD14 -CD11b- progenitors constitute the proliferative compartment of the cell line with the ability to differentiate through a CD34-CD14- CD11b+ stage to ultimately give rise to a morphologically large, nonproliferating CD14+CD11bhi progeny. These CD14+CD11bhi cells were identified as common, immediate myeloid DC precursors with the ability to differentiate into LC and IDC, exhibiting characteristic and mutually exclusive expression of Langerin and DC-specific ICAM-grabbing nonintegrin, respectively. The identity of the MUTZ-3-derived LC subset was confirmed further by the presence of Birbeck granules. We conclude that the MUTZ-3 cell line provides a ready and continuous supply of common myeloid precursors, which should facilitate further study of the ontogeny of myeloid DC lineages.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1337-1344
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of leukocyte biology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2006


  • Acute myeloid leukemia
  • Cytokines
  • MUTZ-3
  • Progenitor

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