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Presence and phenotype of dendritic cells in uveal melanoma
  1. Marta E Polak (marta.polak{at},
  2. Nicola J Borthwick (n.borthwick{at},
  3. Penny Johnson (penny.johnson{at},
  4. John L Hungerford,
  5. Bernie Higgins (bernie.higgins{at},
  6. Silvana Di Palma (silvana.dipalma{at},
  7. Martine Johanna Jager (m.j.jager{at},
  8. Ian A Cree (ian.cree{at}
  1. Translational Oncology Research Centre, United Kingdom
  2. Institute of Ophthalmology, London, United Kingdom
  3. Translational Oncology Research Centre, United Kingdom
  4. Moorfields Eye Hospital, United Kingdom
  5. SHSSW, University of Portsmouth, United Kingdom
  6. Royal Surrey Hospital, Guildford, United Kingdom
  7. Leiden University Medical Centre, Leiden, Netherlands
  8. Translational Oncology Research Centre, Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust, United Kingdom


    Uveal melanoma arises in an immune-privileged site and can itself add to the immunosuppressive environment. Previous studies in cutaneous melanoma have shown the presence of tolerogenic dendritic cells (DC) that could play an important role in tumour progression. In the present study we therefore examined the presence and functional status of DC in uveal melanoma. We examined 10 cases of uveal melanoma for expression of FXIIIa, CD68, HLA-DR, CD40, CD83, TGFβR1, and indolamine 2,3 dioxygenage (IDO) by immunohistochemistry on paraffin embedded sections. CD68-positive macrophages were present in all of the tumours and were evenly distributed throughout. Dendritic cells expressing FXIIIa+ were seen in 7 out of 10 cases and were often found concentrated in foci within the tumour mass. These cells were dendritic and expressed high levels of HLADR. The DC did not express the maturation markers CD83 or CD40. In one case concentration of DC around an area of tumour necrosis was observed, and some of these cells expressed CD83. Numerous tolerizing antigen presenting cells (APC) may play a role in melanoma-related immunosuppression in the eye, though activation of DC may be associated with tumour necrosis.

    • dendritic cell
    • immune response
    • immune tolerance
    • macrophage
    • uveal melanoma

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