Dendritic cells (DCs) have a pivotal role in the onset and regulation of innate and adaptive immune responses. Moreover, DCs can interact with angiogenic modulators, resulting in modification of their biology and participation in angiogenesis. Objectives: This study was designed to evaluate the relationship between the density of DCs, vascularity and expression of angiogenic factors [vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), transforming growth factor (TGF)-β and basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF)] in the central airways of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) patients. Methods: The study included 20 patients with moderate/ severe COPD and 8 healthy control subjects. Bronchial biopsies were evaluated by immunohistochemistry. Specimens were examined for CD83 and CD207 to mark mature and immature DCs, respectively, for collagen IV to evaluate vascularity, and for VEGF, TGF-β and bFGF.
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