Interferon-gamma induces a cell surface phenotype switch on T84 intestinal epithelial cells

Am J Physiol. 1994 Aug;267(2 Pt 1):C402-10. doi: 10.1152/ajpcell.1994.267.2.C402.


Intestinal epithelia are in intimate contact with submucosal and intraepithelial lymphocytes. The concentration of intraepithelial lymphocytes increases during inflammatory processes, and, when stimulated, these cells generate cytokines such as interferon-gamma (IFN-gamma). In this study, we examined the effect of recombinant human IFN-gamma on ion transport events in T84 cells, a crypt epithelial cell line widely used to study electrogenic Cl- secretion, the transport event responsible for mucosal hydration. Epithelial exposure to IFN-gamma brought about a marked attenuation in stimulated Cl- secretion, as measured by generation of short-circuit current (ISC). This IFN-gamma-elicited decrease in the Cl- secretory response was present for a variety of specific agonists, appeared largely due to IFN-gamma interactions with the basolateral surface, and did not result from a defect in second messenger generation. Efflux and uptake studies were utilized to functionally define the individual cell surface transport proteins that participate in Cl- secretion and revealed that, in response to epithelial exposure to IFN-gamma, apical Cl- channels and basolateral Na(+)-K(+)-2Cl- cotransporters, K+ channels, and Na-K-adenosinetriphosphatase were all functionally downregulated. [3H]bumetanide binding assays suggested that surface expression of the cotransporter was diminished by > 70% after IFN-gamma preexposure. Concurrently, surface immunofluorescence studies revealed that epithelial exposure to IFN-gamma brought about the induction of major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class II molecule expression on T84 epithelial monolayers and markedly increased MHC class I surface expression. Finally, neutrophil-epithelial adhesion studies revealed that preexposure of epithelial monolayers to IFN-gamma elicited a beta 2-integrin-dependent induction of neutrophil adhesion.(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

  • Carrier Proteins / metabolism
  • Cell Adhesion / drug effects
  • Cell Line
  • Chlorides / metabolism
  • HLA Antigens / immunology
  • Humans
  • Interferon-gamma / pharmacology*
  • Intestinal Mucosa / cytology
  • Intestinal Mucosa / drug effects*
  • Intestinal Mucosa / physiology*
  • Neutrophils / drug effects
  • Neutrophils / physiology
  • Phenotype


  • Carrier Proteins
  • Chlorides
  • HLA Antigens
  • Interferon-gamma