Expression profile of human Fc receptors in mucosal tissue: Implications for antibody-dependent cellular effector functions targeting HIV-1 transmission

Hannah M. Cheeseman, Ann M. Carias, Abbey B. Evans, Natalia J. Olejniczak, Paul Ziprin, Deborah F.L. King, Thomas J. Hope, Robin J. Shattock

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


The majority of new Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV)-1 infections are acquired via sexual transmission at mucosal surfaces. Partial efficacy (31.2%) of the Thai RV144 HIV-1 vaccine trial has been correlated with Antibody-dependent Cellular Cytotoxicity (ADCC) mediated by non-neutralizing antibodies targeting the V1V2 region of the HIV-1 envelope. This has led to speculation that ADCC and other antibody-dependent cellular effector functions might provide an important defense against mucosal acquisition of HIV-1 infection. However, the ability of antibody-dependent cellular effector mechanisms to impact on early mucosal transmission events will depend on a variety of parameters including effector cell type, frequency, the class of Fc-Receptor (FcR) expressed, the number of FcR per cell and the glycoslyation pattern of the induced antibodies. In this study, we characterize and compare the frequency and phenotype of IgG (CD16 [FcγRIII], CD32 [FcγRII] and CD64 [FcγRI]) and IgA (CD89 [FcαR]) receptor expression on effector cells within male and female genital mucosal tissue, colorectal tissue and red blood cell-lysed whole blood. The frequency of FcR expression on CD14+ monocytic cells, myeloid dendritic cells and natural killer cells were similar across the three mucosal tissue compartments, but significantly lower when compared to the FcR expression profile of effector cells isolated from whole blood, with many cells negative for all FcRs. Of the three tissues tested, penile tissue had the highest percentage of FcR positive effector cells. Immunofluorescent staining was used to determine the location of CD14+, CD11c+ and CD56+ cells within the three mucosal tissues. We show that the majority of effector cells across the different mucosal locations reside within the subepithelial lamina propria. The potential implication of the observed FcR expression patterns on the effectiveness of FcR-dependent cellular effector functions to impact on the initial events in mucosal transmission and dissemination warrants further mechanistic studies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere0154656
JournalPloS one
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • General

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