Synovial fibroblast-neutrophil interactions promote pathogenic adaptive immunity in rheumatoid arthritis

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Science Immunology  14 Apr 2017:
Vol. 2, Issue 10, eaag3358
DOI: 10.1126/sciimmunol.aag3358

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NETs Blow the Joint

Neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) activate synovial fibroblast-like synoviocytes (FLS) in joints of individuals with rheumatoid arthritis. Now, Carmona-Rivera et al. investigate the mechanism behind this activation. They found that NETs containing citrullinated peptides could be internalized by FLS through the RAGE-TLR9 pathway and then loaded onto major histocompatibility complex class II and presented to antigen-specific T cells, which contribute to joint inflammation. NET-loaded FLS induced autoantibody production and joint disease in mice. These data suggest that cross-talk between NETs and FLS may contribute to rheumatoid arthritis.