Dendritic cells and skin sensitization: Biological roles and uses in hazard identification

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Recent advances have been made in our understanding of the roles played by cutaneous dendritic cells (DCs) in the induction of contact allergy. A number of associated changes in epidermal Langerhans cell phenotype and function required for effective skin sensitization are providing the foundations for the development of cellular assays (using DC and DC-like cells) for skin sensitization hazard identification. These alternative approaches to the identification and characterization of skin sensitizing chemicals were the focus of a Workshop entitled “Dendritic Cells and Skin Sensitization: Biological Roles and Uses in Hazard Identification” that was given at the annual Society of Toxicology meeting held March 6–9, 2006 in San Diego, California. This paper reports information that was presented during the Workshop.

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