Lung epithelial lining fluid T cell subsets defined by distinct patterns of beta 7 and beta 1 integrin expression

Am J Respir Cell Mol Biol. 1994 Mar;10(3):237-44. doi: 10.1165/ajrcmb.10.3.7509610.


Integrins are heterodimeric cell-surface glycoproteins that mediate cell-cell and cell-matrix adhesion. We previously identified cDNA encoding a novel integrin beta subunit, beta 7, from bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) leukocytes. The beta 7 subunit protein is now known to associate with at least two integrin alpha subunits on lymphocytes. One beta 7 integrin, alpha 4 beta 7, mediates lymphocyte adhesion to endothelium and to fibronectin. The other known beta 7 integrin, alpha E beta 7, has recently been shown to mediate lymphocyte-epithelial cell adhesion in vitro. We used flow microfluorometry to analyze the expression of alpha 4 beta 7, alpha E beta 7, and other integrins on blood T cells and epithelial lining fluid T cells obtained from five healthy adult volunteers by bronchoalveolar lavage. alpha 4 beta 7 was the predominant beta 7 integrin on blood T cells, whereas alpha E beta 7 was predominant on BALF T cells. BALF T cells could be divided into alpha E beta 7- and alpha E beta 7+ subsets. Between 29 and 61% (mean 42%) of CD3+ T cells were alpha E beta 7+ alpha E beta 7 was more likely to be present on CD8+ T cells (mean 69% alpha E beta 7+) than on CD4+ T cells (mean 29% alpha E beta 7+). The alpha E beta 7- and alpha E beta 7+ BALF T cell subsets were also found to differ in their expression of other integrins.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Bronchoalveolar Lavage Fluid / cytology*
  • Cell Adhesion
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Cytophotometry
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Integrin beta Chains*
  • Integrin beta1
  • Integrins / biosynthesis*
  • Lung / cytology
  • Lymphocyte Activation
  • Male
  • T-Lymphocyte Subsets / classification
  • T-Lymphocyte Subsets / immunology*
  • Transforming Growth Factor beta / pharmacology


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Integrin beta Chains
  • Integrin beta1
  • Integrins
  • Transforming Growth Factor beta
  • integrin alphaEbeta7
  • integrin beta7