An MHC II-dependent activation loop between adipose tissue macrophages and CD4+ T cells controls obesity-induced inflammation

Kae Won Cho, David L. Morris, Jennifer L. delProposto, Lynn Geletka, Brian Zamarron, Gabriel Martinez-Santibanez, Kevin A. Meyer, Kanakadurga Singer, Robert W. O'Rourke, Carey N. Lumeng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

80 Scopus citations


An adaptive immune response triggered by obesity is characterized by the activation of adipose tissue CD4+ T cells by unclear mechanisms. We have examined whether interactions between adipose tissue macrophages (ATMs) and CD4+ T cells contribute to adipose tissue metainflammation. Intravital microscopy identifies dynamic antigen-dependent interactions between ATMs and T cells in visceral fat. Mice deficient in major histocompatibility complex class II (MHC II) showed protection from diet-induced obesity. Deletion of MHC II expression in macrophages led to an adipose tissue-specific decrease in the effector/memory CD4+ T cells, attenuation of CD11c+ ATM accumulation, and improvement in glucose intolerance by increasing adipose tissue insulin sensitivity. Ablation experiments demonstrated that the maintenance of proliferating conventional T cells is dependent on signals from CD11c+ ATMs in obese mice. These studies demonstrate the importance of MHCII-restricted signals from ATMs that regulate adipose tissue T cell maturation and metainflammation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)605-617
Number of pages13
JournalCell Reports
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)

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