Rationale: Bone marrow transplant (BMT) recipients experience frequent and severe respiratory viral infections (RVIs). However, the immunological mechanisms predisposing to RVIs are uncertain. Therefore, we hypothesized that antiviral T cell immunity is impaired as a consequence of allogeneic BMT, independent of pharmacologic immunosuppression, and is responsible for increased susceptibility to RVI.
Methods: Bone marrow and splenocytes from C57BL/6(H2(b)) mice were transplanted into B10.BR(H2(k)) (Allo) or C57BL/6(H2(b)) (Syn) recipients. Five weeks after transplantation, recipient mice were inoculated intranasally with mouse parainfluenza virus type 1 (mPIV-1), commonly known as Sendai virus (SeV), and monitored for relevant immunological and disease endpoints.
Main results: Severe and persistent airway inflammation, epithelial injury, and enhanced mortality are found after viral infection in Allo mice but not in control Syn and non-transplanted mice. In addition, viral clearance is delayed in Allo mice as evidenced by prolonged detection of viral transcripts at Day 15 post-inoculation (p.i.) but not in control mice. In concert with these events, we also detected decreased levels of total and virus-specific CD8(+) T cells, as well as increased T cellexpression of inhibitory receptor programmed death-1 (PD-1), in the lungs of Allo mice at Day 8 p.i. Adoptive transfer of CD8(+) T cells from non-transplanted mice recovered from SeV infection into Allo mice at Day 8 p.i. restored normal levels of viral clearance, epithelial repair, and lung inflammation.
Conclusions: Taken together these results indicate that allogeneic BMT results in more severe RVI based on the failure to develop an appropriate pulmonary CD8(+) T cell response, providing an important potential mechanism to target in improving outcomes of RVI after BMT.
Keywords: Bone marrow transplant; CD8(+) T cells; Lung; Respiratory virus.
Published by Elsevier B.V.