Systematic characterization of human CD8+ T cells with natural killer cell markers in comparison with natural killer cells and normal CD8+ T cells
Version of Record online: 21 DEC 2001
Volume 103, Issue 3, pages 281–290, July 2001
How to Cite
Ohkawa, T., Seki, S., Dobashi, H., Koike, Y., Habu, Y., Ami, K., Hiraide, H. and Sekine, I. (2001), Systematic characterization of human CD8+ T cells with natural killer cell markers in comparison with natural killer cells and normal CD8+ T cells. Immunology, 103: 281–290. doi: 10.1046/j.1365-2567.2001.01248.x
- Issue online: 21 DEC 2001
- Version of Record online: 21 DEC 2001
- Received 9 October 2000; revised 19 February 2000; accepted 16 March 2001.
We investigated the function of CD56+ CD8+ T cells (CD56+ T cells) and CD56− CD57+ CD8+ T cells (CD57+ T cells; natural killer (NK)-type T cells) and compared them with those of normal CD56− CD57− CD8+ T cells (CD8+ T cells) and CD56+ NK cells from healthy volunteers. After the stimulation with immobilized anti-CD3 antibodies, both NK-type T cells produced much larger amounts of interferon-γ (IFN-γ) than CD8+ T cells. Both NK-type T cells also acquired a more potent cytotoxicity against NK-sensitive K562 cells than CD8+ T cells while only CD56+ T cells showed a potent cytotoxicity against NK-resistant Raji cells. After the stimulation with a combination of interleukin (IL)-2, IL-12 and IL-15, the IFN-γ amounts produced were NK cells ≥ CD56+ T cells ≥ CD57+ T cells > CD8+ T cells. The cytotoxicities against K562 cells were NK cells > CD56+ T cells ≥ CD57+ T cells > CD8+ T cells while cytotoxicities against Raji cells were CD56+ T cells > CD57+ T cells ≥ CD8+ T cells ≥ NK cells. However, the CD3-stimulated proliferation of both NK-type T cells was smaller than that of CD8+ T cells partly because NK-type T cells were susceptible to apoptosis. In addition to NK cells, NK-type T cells but not CD8+ T cells stimulated with cytokines, expressed cytoplasmic perforin and granzyme B. Furthermore, CD3-stimulated IFN-γ production from peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) correlated with the proportions of CD57+ T cells in PBMC from donors. Our findings suggest that NK-type T cells play an important role in the T helper 1 responses and the immunological changes associated with ageing.