Human T-lymphotropic virus type I (HTLV-I)-specific CD8+ cells accumulate in the lungs of patients infected with HTLV-I with pulmonary involvement

J Med Virol. 2012 Jul;84(7):1120-7. doi: 10.1002/jmv.23307.

Abstract

Pulmonary involvement has been identified in human T-lymphotropic virus type I (HTLV-I) carriers and patients with HTLV-I-associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis (HAM/TSP). However, the relationship between HTLV-I infection and lung disease is poorly understood. The occurrence of HTLV-I-specific immune responses in the lungs of patients infected with HTLV-I with pulmonary involvement was investigated. The frequency of HTLV-I-specific CD8+ cells and the amount of HTLV-I proviral DNA were determined in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid cells and peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) from five patients with HAM/TSP and one HTLV-I carrier who had pulmonary involvement. HTLV-I-specific CD8+ cells were detected by flow cytometry using human leukocyte antigen/antigen complex multimers. The analysis of bronchoalveolar lavage fluid revealed lymphocytosis in five of six patients. HTLV-I provirus was detected in the bronchoalveolar lavage fluid cells of all patients, and the proviral load in these cells was comparable to that in PBMCs. The frequency of HTLV-I-specific CD8+ cells in the bronchoalveolar lavage fluid cells was 5.1 times higher than that in PBMCs. Immunohistochemically, clusters formed by HTLV-I-specific CD8+ cells were detected in lung tissue by in situ tetramer staining. No samples were available from patients infected with HTLV-I without lung disorders. Whether accumulation of CD8+ cells is specific to patients with pulmonary involvement remains unclear. These results indicate that HTLV-I-specific CD8+ cells accumulate and HTLV-I-infected cells exist in the lungs of patients infected with HTLV-I with pulmonary involvement.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Blood / immunology
  • Blood / virology
  • Bronchoalveolar Lavage Fluid / cytology
  • Bronchoalveolar Lavage Fluid / virology
  • CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes / immunology*
  • Carrier State / immunology
  • Carrier State / virology
  • Female
  • HTLV-I Infections / immunology*
  • HTLV-I Infections / virology
  • Human T-lymphotropic virus 1 / immunology*
  • Humans
  • Leukocytes, Mononuclear / immunology
  • Leukocytes, Mononuclear / virology
  • Lung / immunology*
  • Lung / virology*
  • Lung Diseases / immunology*
  • Lung Diseases / virology
  • Middle Aged
  • Proviruses / isolation & purification
  • Viral Load