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Functional maturation of human naive T helper cells in the absence of accessory cells. Generation of IL-4-producing T helper cells does not require exogenous IL-4

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Catharien Hilkens


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In the human model, requirements for the primary onset of IFN-gamma and IL-4 production in maturing T helper lymphocytes were compared. Stimulation of freshly isolated CD4+CD45RA+ naive Th cells with immobilized CD3 mAb in the presence of exogenous IL-2 resulted in the proliferative response of this subset, which was equal to or higher than CD4+CD45R0+ memory Th cells. Throughout the first 6 days after this mode of stimulation, naive Th cells did not secrete IL-4 and produced only small amounts of IFN-gamma, whereas high amounts of both lymphokines were secreted by stimulated autologous memory Th cells. Under these conditions, naive Th cells acquired the CD45RA-CD45R0+ memory phenotype. After restimulation, such in vitro-generated CD45R0+ cells produced high amounts of IFN-gamma but, despite the full phenotype conversion, they produced only trace amounts of IL-4. In contrast, when the primary stimulation and the expansion of cells proceeded in the presence of IL-1 beta or CD28 mAb, both IFN-gamma and IL-4 were produced after restimulation, in similar amounts compared with those produced by memory Th cells. The effect of IL-1 beta and CD28 signaling could not be obtained by the administration of exogenous IL-4 nor could the onset of IL-4 production be prevented by the presence of a neutralizing anti-IL-4 Ab in primary cultures. These data show that the development of human IL-4-producing Th cells can proceed in the absence of any pre-existing source of IL-4 and can be driven solely by the APC-related signals.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Kalinski P, Hilkens CM, Wierenga EA, van der Pouw Kraan TC, van Lier RA, Bos JD, Kapsenberg ML, Snijdewint FG

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Journal of Immunology

Year: 1995

Volume: 154

Issue: 8

Pages: 3753-3760

Print publication date: 15/04/1995

ISSN (print): 0022-1767

ISSN (electronic): 1550-6606

Publisher: American Association of Immunologists

Notes: 0022-1767 Journal Article