Nat Methods. 2012 Apr .

Functionally relevant neutrophilia in CD11c diphtheria toxin receptor transgenic mice.

Tittel AP, Heuser C, Ohliger C, Llanto C, Yona S, Hämmerling GJ, Engel DR, Garbi N, Kurts C

Transgenic mice expressing the diphtheria toxin receptor (DTR) in specific cell types are key tools for functional studies in several biological systems. B6.FVB-Tg(Itgax-DTR/EGFP)57Lan/J (CD11c.DTR) and B6.Cg-Tg(Itgax-DTR/OVA/EGFP)1Gjh/Crl (CD11c.DOG) mice express the DTR in CD11c(+) cells, allowing conditional depletion of dendritic cells. We report that dendritic-cell depletion in these models caused polymorphonuclear neutrophil (PMN) release from the bone marrow, which caused chemokine-dependent neutrophilia after 6-24 h and increased bacterial clearance in a mouse pyelonephritis model. We present a transgenic mouse line, B6.Cg-Tg(Itgax-EGFP-CRE-DTR-LUC)2Gjh/Crl (CD11c.LuciDTR), which is unaffected by early neutrophilia. However, CD11c.LuciDTR and CD11c.DTR mice showed late neutrophilia 72 h after dendritic cell depletion, which was independent of PMN release and possibly resulted from increased granulopoiesis. Thus, the time point of dendritic cell depletion and the choice of DTR transgenic mouse line must be considered in experimental settings where neutrophils may be involved.