The Classical CD14++CD16- Monocytes, but Not the Patrolling CD14+CD16+ Monocytes, Promote Th17 Responses to Candida albicans

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In the present study, we investigated the functional differences between cluster of differentiation (CD)14++CD16- and CD14+CD16+ monocytes during anti-Candida host defense. CD14++CD16- are the "classical" monocytes and represent the majority of circulating monocytes in humans, while CD14+CD16+ monocytes patrol the vasculature for maintenance of tissue integrity and repair. Both monocyte subsets inhibited the germination of live Candida albicans, and there was no difference in their capacity to phagocytose and kill Candida. Although production of IL-6 and IL-10 induced by C. albicans was found to be similar between monocyte subsets, IL-1β and prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) production was higher in CD14++CD16- compared with CD14+CD16+ monocytes. In line with the increased production of IL-1β and PGE2, central mediators for inducing Th17 responses, CD14++CD16- monocytes induced greater Th17 responses upon stimulation with heat-killed C. albicans yeast. The percentage of cells that expressed mannose receptor (MR) was higher in the CD14++CD16- monocyte subset, and MR-specific stimulation induced higher Th17 responses only in co-cultures of CD14++CD16- monocytes and CD4 lymphocytes. In conclusion, both monocyte subsets have potent innate antifungal properties, but only CD14++CD16- monocytes are capable of inducing a potent Th17 response to C. albicans, an important component of antifungal host defense.