Pericytes support neutrophil subendothelial cell crawling and breaching of venular walls in vivo

Doris Proebstl, Mathieu-Benoît Voisin, Abigail Woodfin, James R. Whiteford, Fulvio D'Acquisto, Gareth E. Jones, David Rowe, Sussan Nourshargh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Neutrophil transmigration through venular walls that are composed of endothelial cells (ECs), pericytes, and the venular basement membrane is a key component of innate immunity. Through direct analysis of leukocyte-pericyte interactions in inflamed tissues using confocal intravital microscopy, we show how pericytes facilitate transmigration in vivo. After EC migration, neutrophils crawl along pericyte processes to gaps between adjacent pericytes in an ICAM-1-, Mac-1-, and LFA-1-dependent manner. These gaps were enlarged in inflamed tissues through pericyte shape change and were used as exit points by neutrophils in breaching the venular wall. The findings identify previously unknown roles for pericytes in neutrophil transmigration in vivo and add additional steps to the leukocyte adhesion cascade that supports leukocyte trafficking into sites of inflammation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1219-34
Number of pages16
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 4 Jun 2012


  • Animals
  • Basement Membrane
  • Cell Movement
  • Cytokines
  • Endothelial Cells
  • Inflammation
  • Intercellular Adhesion Molecule-1
  • Interleukin-1beta
  • Lymphocyte Function-Associated Antigen-1
  • Macrophage-1 Antigen
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Mice, Transgenic
  • Neutrophils
  • Pericytes
  • Receptors, Interleukin-1
  • Receptors, Tumor Necrosis Factor
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha
  • Journal Article
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

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