Macrophage heterogeneity in the intestinal cells of salmon : Hints from transcriptomic and imaging data
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Original versionPark, Y., Zhang, Q., Fernandes, J. M. O., Wiegertjes, G. F. & Kiron, V. (2021). Macrophage heterogeneity in the intestinal cells of salmon: Hints from transcriptomic and imaging data. Frontiers in Immunology, 12: 798156. doi: 10.3389/fimmu.2021.798156
The intestine has many types of cells that are present mostly in the epithelium and lamina propria. The importance of the intestinal cells for the mammalian mucosal immune system is well-established. However, there is no in-depth information about many of the intestinal cells in teleosts. In our previous study, we reported that adherent intestinal cells (AIC) predominantly express macrophage-related genes. To gather further evidence that AIC include macrophage-like cells, we compared their phagocytic activity and morphology with those of adherent head kidney cells (AKC), previously characterized as macrophage-like cells. We also compared equally abundant as well as differentially expressed mRNAs and miRNAs between AIC and AKC. AIC had lower phagocytic activity and were larger and more circular than macrophage-like AKC. RNA-Seq data revealed that there were 18309 mRNAs, with 59 miRNAs that were equally abundant between AIC and AKC. Integrative analysis of the mRNA and miRNA transcriptomes revealed macrophage heterogeneity in both AIC and AKC. In addition, analysis of AIC and AKC transcriptomes revealed functional characteristics of mucosal and systemic macrophages. Five pairs with significant negative correlations between miRNA and mRNAs were linked to macrophages and epithelial cells and their interaction could be pointing to macrophage activation and differentiation. The potential macrophage markers suggested in this study should be investigated under different immune conditions to understand the exact macrophage phenotypes.