Debora Decote-Ricardo, Leonardo Freire-de-Lima, Alexandre Morrot and CÃ©lio Geraldo Freire-de-Lima
Macrophages are present in almost all tissues of the body and are endowed with alternative differentiation programs resulting in a variety of terminal differentiated cells. They have role in the innate responses as well as in development and maintenance of adaptive immunity against invading pathogens. These cells have phagocytic activity and can sense the microenvironmental stimuli including microbial components that result in differentiation of distinct marker expression patterns and functions that clearly define macrophage subsets. Here we review the functional plasticity of macrophages in response to infections and their integration into adaptive immunity.