Mast cell modulation of the vascular and lymphatic endothelium.
Mast cells (MCs) promote a wide range of localized and systemic inflammatory responses. Their involvement in immediate as well as chronic inflammatory reactions at both local and distal sites points to an extraordinarily powerful immunoregulatory capacity with spatial and temporal versatility. MCs are preferentially found in close proximity to both vascular and lymphatic vessels. On activation, they undergo a biphasic secretory response involving the rapid release of prestored vasoactive mediators followed by de novo synthesized products. Many actions of MCs are related to their capacity to regulate vascular flow and permeability and to the recruitment of various inflammatory cells from the vasculature into inflammatory sites. These mediators often work in an additive fashion and achieve their inflammatory effects locally by directly acting on the vascular and lymphatic endothelia, but they also can affect distal sites. Along these lines, the lymphatic and endothelial vasculatures of the host act as a conduit for the dissemination of MC signals during inflammation. The central role of the MC-endothelial cell axis to immune homeostasis is emphasized by the fact that some of the most effective current treatments for inflammatory disorders are directed at interfering with this interaction.
Kunder, CA; St John, AL; Abraham, SN
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