Involvement of two distinct regulatory T cell populations in the antigen-specific suppression of cytolytic T cell generation

Academic Article


  • Alloantigen-specific, radiation-resistant T cells generated in mixed-lymphocyte cultures inhibited the generation of allospecific CTL responses in vitro. This regulatory T cell population was studied using mAb generated to Ag-specific suppressor factors that regulate the response to the synthetic terpolymer L-glutamic acid60-L-alanine30-L-tyrosine10 (GAT). Both monoclonal 984 D4.6.5 and a pool of four mAb 2441, when added in the presence of complement, eliminated alloantigen-specific inhibition of the CTL response. When separate cell cultures treated with mAb 984 or 2441 plus complement were recombined, inhibition was reestablished, suggesting that two or more populations of cells are required for active inhibition. Furthermore, neither the mAb 984 nor the mAb 2441 plus complement had any effect on any stage of CTL development. This suggests that the inhibition of the CTL response was not the result of cytolytic activity via the regulatory T cells. Experiments in which these antibodies were added without complement treatment showed that the mAb 2441 neutralized the inhibitory activity, whereas mAb 984 augmented inhibition. It is concluded from these studies that regulatory T cells originally identified in humoral immune responses also regulate cell-mediated immune responses. Suppressor epitopes are displayed on the surface of these cells that allow them to be distinguished from other T cells. These data also show the utility of the mAb 984 and 2441 raised against specific suppressor T cell products in different experimental models of immunity. These studies suggest that phenotypically distinct Ts cell populations can play a normal regulatory role in both cell-mediated and humoral immunity.
  • Authors

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    Author List

  • Devens BH; Koontz AW; Kapp JA; Pierce CW; Webb DR
  • Start Page

  • 1394
  • End Page

  • 1401
  • Volume

  • 146
  • Issue

  • 5