SEARCH

SEARCH BY CITATION

Keywords:

  • Immune function;
  • CD69;
  • multiparameter analysis;
  • fluorescence triggering;
  • whole blood activation;
  • three-color immunofluorescence;
  • T-cell activation

Abstract

Standard in vitro methods for assessing T-cell activation have typically measured either the proliferative responses of peripheral blood mononuclear cell (PBMC) cultures to various provocative stimuli employing tritiated thymidine incorporation or the secretion of specific cytokines from activated cells. These bulk assay methods suffer the drawback of being lengthy assays, and, in addition, they do not provide information about functional responses of individual lymphocyte subsets. This report describes a three-color flow cytometric method for the rapid analysis (4 hours) of individual T-cell subsets in whole blood responding to various provocative stimuli, including pokeweed mitogen, the comitogenic monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) CD2/CD2R, the superantigen staphylococcal enterotoxin B (SEB), and the specific antigen Candida albicans. After 4 hours, CD69 expression in response to CD2/CD2R paralleled thymidine incorporation measured after 72 hours. Variations in the proportions of CD4+ and CD4 T cells expressing CD69 were observed with different stimuli. These observations demonstrate the potential of multiparameter flow cytometry for the investigation of functional responses of individual T-cell subsets to a variety of stimuli in whole blood. © 1995 Wiley-Liss, Inc.