Specific expression of surface interferon-gamma on interferon-gamma producing T cells from mouse and man

Eur J Immunol. 1996 Jan;26(1):263-7. doi: 10.1002/eji.1830260141.


Interferon (IFN)-gamma is a potent immunoregulatory protein secreted by CD4+ and CD8+ T cells and by natural killer cells. Here, we show that IFN-gamma is specifically displayed at a low concentration on the cell surface of those activated T cells from mouse and man which express IFN-gamma. It is transiently expressed on the cell surface with kinetics similar to those of intracellular IFN-gamma expression. Detectable surface IFN-gamma is not expressed by activated T helper (Th) cells producing other cytokines but which do not express IFN-gamma. Thus, surface IFN-gamma is the first available marker for live T lymphocytes expressing IFN-gamma, e.g. Th1 cells.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Humans
  • Interferon-gamma / analysis*
  • Interferon-gamma / biosynthesis*
  • Interleukin-4 / biosynthesis
  • Interleukin-5 / biosynthesis
  • Intracellular Fluid / chemistry
  • Lymphocyte Activation
  • Membrane Proteins / analysis
  • Membrane Proteins / biosynthesis*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Mice, Transgenic
  • T-Lymphocytes / classification
  • T-Lymphocytes / metabolism*


  • Interleukin-5
  • Membrane Proteins
  • Interleukin-4
  • Interferon-gamma