Abstract Title:

Immunosuppressive effect of quercetin on dendritic cell activation and function.

Abstract Source:

J Immunol. 2010 Jun 15;184(12):6815-21. Epub 2010 May 17. PMID: 20483746

Abstract Author(s):

Ren-Yeong Huang, Yen-Ling Yu, Wan-Chien Cheng, Chun-Nan OuYang, Earl Fu, Ching-Liang Chu

Article Affiliation:

Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences and Department of Periodontology, School of Dentistry, National Defense Medical Center and Tri-Service General Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan.


Dendritic cells (DCs) play a crucial role in linking innate and adaptive immunity. Thus, DCs have been regarded as a major target of immunosuppressants for the control of harmful immune responses. In this study, we examined the effect of quercetin, a natural flavonoid found in many vegetables and fruits, on the activation and function of mouse DCs. Quercetin effectively inhibited LPS-induced DC activation by reducing the production of proinflammatory cytokines/chemokines and the expression levels of MHC class II and costimulatory molecules. In addition, quercetin uniquely blocked endocytosis by DCs and the LPS-induced DC migration was diminished by quercetin treatment. Furthermore, quercetin abrogated the ability of LPS-stimulated DCs to induce Ag-specific T cell activation, both in vitro and in vivo. Remarkably, coadministration of quercetin with 2,4-dinitro-1-fluorobenzene prevented 2,4-dinitro-1-fluorobenzene-induced contact hypersensitivity, indicating the potential of quercetin for treating delayed-type hypersensitive diseases. Blockage of LPS-induced ERK, JNK, Akt, and NF-kappaB activation contributed to the inhibitory effect of quercetin on DCs. These results strongly suggest that quercetin may be a potent immunosuppressive agent and could be used in the prevention and therapy of chronic inflammation, autoimmunity, and transplantation via the abolishment of DC activation and function.

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