Tissue residency is considered a defining feature of the innate lymphoid cell (ILC) populations located within mucosal and adipose tissues. ILCs are also present within all lymphoid tissues, but whether ILCs migrate between lymphoid and nonlymphoid sites and in what context is poorly understood. To determine whether migratory ILCs exist within peripheral lymph nodes (LNs), we labeled all cells within the brachial LN (bLN) of transgenic mice expressing a photoconvertible fluorescent protein by direct exposure to light. Tracking of cellular changes in the labeled LN revealed the gradual migration of new ILCs into the tissue, balanced by egress of ILCs dependent on sphingosine-1-phosphate receptors. Most of the migratory ILCs were ILC1s, entering LNs directly from the circulation in a CD62L- and CCR7-dependent manner and thus behaving like conventional natural killer (cNK) cells. Upon egress, both ILC1s and cNK cells were found to recirculate through peripheral LNs. A distinct population of migratory ILC2s were detected in the LN, but most of the ILC3s were tissue resident. Functionally, both migratory and resident ILC1s within LNs were able to rapidly produce IFN-γ to support the generation of robust TH1 T cell responses after immunization. Thus, migratory and resident ILC populations exist within peripheral LNs, with ILC1s, akin to cNK cells, able to traffic into these tissues where they can contribute to the initiation of adaptive immunity.
Bibliographical noteCopyright © 2019 The Authors, some rights reserved; exclusive licensee American Association for the Advancement of Science. No claim to original U.S. Government Works.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy