The monocyte-macrophage axis in the intestine

Calum C Bain, Allan McI Mowat

Research output: Contribution to journalLiterature reviewpeer-review


Macrophages are one of the most abundant leucocytes in the intestinal mucosa where they are essential for maintaining homeostasis. However, they are also implicated in the pathogenesis of disorders such as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), offering potential targets for novel therapies. Here we discuss the function of intestinal monocytes and macrophages during homeostasis and describe how these populations and their functions change during infection and inflammation. Furthermore, we review the current evidence that the intestinal macrophage pool requires continual renewal from circulating blood monocytes, unlike most other tissue macrophages which appear to derive from primitive precursors that subsequently self-renew.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)41-8
Number of pages8
JournalCellular immunology
Issue number1-2
Early online date1 Apr 2014
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2014

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