T cell subset responses to allogeneic endothelium. Proliferation of CD8+ but not CD4+ lymphocytes

Transplantation. 1993 Sep;56(3):656-61. doi: 10.1097/00007890-199309000-00030.


Endothelial cells were isolated from the hearts of neonatal mice and cocultured with syngeneic and allogeneic lymphocytes. T cells isolated by passage through nylon wool proliferated when cultured with allogeneic endothelium but not when cultured with syngeneic endothelium. This response was almost entirely confined to the CD8+ lymphocyte subset as purified CD4+ lymphocytes displayed a minimal response. Pretreatment of endothelial cells with recombinant murine gamma interferon induced expression of Ia but did not enable endothelial cells to activate CD4+ lymphocytes. Activation of CD8+ and T lymphocytes could be blocked with monoclonal anti class I antibody but was unaffected by anti-class II antibody. The failure to activate CD4+ lymphocytes was not due to suppression and did not lead to an anergic state. Instead, coculture of CD4+ cells with allogeneic endothelial cells induced a partial activation consisting of IL-2 receptor expression and accelerated secondary response kinetics.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antigen-Presenting Cells / physiology
  • CD4 Antigens / analysis
  • CD8 Antigens / analysis
  • Cell Division
  • Cell Line / immunology
  • Clone Cells / immunology
  • Endothelium, Vascular / cytology*
  • Endothelium, Vascular / immunology
  • Heart Transplantation / physiology
  • Histocompatibility Antigens Class II / analysis
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Myocardium / cytology
  • Spleen / cytology
  • T-Lymphocyte Subsets / cytology
  • T-Lymphocyte Subsets / immunology
  • T-Lymphocyte Subsets / physiology*
  • Transplantation, Homologous


  • CD4 Antigens
  • CD8 Antigens
  • Histocompatibility Antigens Class II