Distinctive functional characteristics of human "T" lymphocytes defined by E rosetting or a monoclonal anti-T cell antibody

Eur J Immunol. 1981 Apr;11(4):329-34. doi: 10.1002/eji.1830110412.


The properties of human lymphocyte fractions isolated either by sheep red cell(E) rosetting or by fluorescence-activated cell sorting after staining with UCHT1 monoclonal anti-T cell antibody have been compared. Two populations of E+ cells with very different phenotype and function have been identified. E+/UCHT1+ cells respond well to the T cell mitogens phytohemagglutinin and concanavalin A and provide help for an in vitro specific antibody response. They can also suppress the antibody response of allegeneic peripheral blood mononuclear cells. In contrast, the E+/UCHT1- population, which has no other markers characteristic of T cells, fails to respond to mitogens or to provide help or suppression for an antibody response. These cells, however, are highly active natural killers. They possess Fc gamma receptors and have a characteristic staining pattern of nonspecific esterase enzyme activity. It is concluded that not all cells capable of forming E rosettes are thymus-processed cells and that this heterogeneity can be revealed by staining with the monoclonal anti-T cell reagent UCHT1.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies*
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Antibodies, Viral / biosynthesis
  • Antibody Specificity
  • Concanavalin A / pharmacology
  • Cytotoxicity, Immunologic
  • Humans
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Phenotype
  • Phytohemagglutinins / pharmacology
  • Rosette Formation*
  • Sheep
  • Staphylococcal Protein A / pharmacology
  • T-Lymphocytes / immunology*


  • Antibodies
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Antibodies, Viral
  • Phytohemagglutinins
  • Staphylococcal Protein A
  • Concanavalin A