At birth, the lungs rapidly transition from a pathogen-free, hypoxic environment to a pathogen-rich, rhythmically distended air-liquid interface. Although many studies have focused on the adult lung, the perinatal lung remains unexplored. Here, we present an atlas of the murine lung immune compartment during early postnatal development. We show that the late embryonic lung is dominated by specialized proliferative macrophages with a surprising physical interaction with the developing vasculature. These macrophages disappear after birth and are replaced by a dynamic mixture of macrophage subtypes, dendritic cells, granulocytes, and lymphocytes. Detailed characterization of macrophage diversity revealed an orchestration of distinct subpopulations across postnatal development to fill context-specific functions in tissue remodeling, angiogenesis, and immunity. These data both broaden the putative roles for immune cells in the developing lung and provide a framework for understanding how external insults alter immune cell phenotype during a period of rapid lung growth and heightened vulnerability.
- Cristina M Alvira
- David N Cornfield
- Cristina M Alvira
The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.
Animal experimentation: This study was performed in strict accordance with the recommendations in the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals of the National Institutes of Health. All of the animals were handled according to approved institutional animal care and use committee (IACUC) protocols (#19087) of Stanford University School of Medicine.
- Emma L Rawlins, University of Cambridge, United Kingdom
© 2020, Domingo-Gonzalez et al.
This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License permitting unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.
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