PMID: 88815Jan 1, 1979

Macrophage heterogeneity

Vox Sanguinis
K E HopperD S Nelson


Macrophages are a mobile, functionally diverse group of cells which may be recruited and stimulated to a high degree of metabolic activity. Heterogeneity may be detected from one site to another and result from local influences, e.g. lung v. peritoneal cells, or occur within a population and arise dur to different stages of differentiation, maturation or activation or possibly from distinct cell lines. Recruitment and turnover are important determinants of the diversity of cells at any one site. In addition, anti-tumour, anti-microbial and secretory capacities of macrophages are greatly influenced by the degree and nature of stimulation possibly affecting only a subpopulation of the cells. Accessory cell activity is also a function of a minor population of macrophages which have distinct surface antigens. The sources of the heterogeneity and the interrelationship between the macrophages subpopulations remain to be determined.


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