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Aging Immunity: Monocyte Derived Dendritic Cell’s Metabolic Shift associated with Human Aging

Creative Commons 'BY' version 4.0 license

Human aging is often linked to the gradual decline of the immune system. This age-related decline of the immune system, or immunosenescence, is often attributed to the increased frequency of elder morbidity and mortality. One prominent immunosenescence feature is that of a low grade chronic inflammation. Dendritic cells (DC) play a major role in inducing adaptive immunity by presenting pathogenic antigens at T-Cells to initiate immune response. Once activated, dendritic cells undergo physiological transformation and express a host of costimulatory and pro-inflammatory molecules. This transformation requires a shift in metabolic demand to meet the bioenergetic and biosynthetic needs of activated dendritic cells. We hypothesized that aging initiates excessive dendritic cell activation which could in turn triggers chronic inflammation observed in elderly subjects. As such, through studying known cellular metabolic markers from microfluidic aided fluorescence lifetime Imaging microscopy (FLIM) and flow cytometry, we report the preliminary results on the metabolic effects of aging on dendritic cells.

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