We are very happy to reveal our lab has contributed to a paper in collaboration with Will Wood and Paul Martin at the University of Bristol, which has been published in the prestigious journal Cell!
The paper describes how macrophages (hemocytes) in the developing fruit fly embryo need to eat dying cells in order to become responsive to wounds and be able to detect and phagocytose bacteria in vivo. Exposure to apoptotic cells causes calcium flashes within fly macrophages on engulfment of the dying cells and this in tern activates JNK signalling to drive up levels of a scavenger receptor called Draper within these macrophages. As Draper is required for both inflammatory migration to wounds and clearance of pathogens, macrophages that have never experienced apoptosis (such as macrophages in embryos that lack all apoptosis) fail to respond to wounds or infection properly. This work uncovers novel mechanisms that determine how immune cells develop a memory of their experiences and may become ‘primed’ to respond to subsequent challenges.
This is the title of the paper:
Corpse Engulfment Generates a Molecular Memory that Primes the Macrophage Inflammatory Response
Helen Weavers, Iwan R. Evans, Paul Martin, Will Wood
The article can be found here
University of Bristol press release