Determination of lymphocyte subsets and cytokine levels in cynomolgus monkeys

Toxicology. 1995 Dec 20;105(1):81-90. doi: 10.1016/0300-483x(95)03127-2.


Lymphocyte subset counts and cytokine assays are useful to investigate the interactions of pharmaceuticals, particularly new biotechnology products, with the immune system. As no specific reagents are available to label monkey lymphocytes or to assay monkey cytokines by ELISA, cross reactivities of a panel of monoclonal antibodies specific for human lymphocytes or cytokines were studied in the Cynomolgus monkey. The proportions of B, T, CD4+ and CD8+ cells were determined by flow cytometry using a whole blood technique with at least one monoclonal antibody for each subset. Background data were obtained for more than 300 samples. Monkey and human cultured white blood cells were stimulated with standard mitogens. PHA + LPS in humans and Con A + PWM in monkeys triggered the greatest proliferation. IL-1 beta IL-2, IL-6, IL-8, TNF-alpha, TNF-beta and IFN-gamma, but not IL-1 alpha, were detected in the monkey using human reagents. In addition, the cytokine profile and the kinetics of cytokine production compared well in humans and Cynomolgus monkeys.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / immunology
  • Cross Reactions
  • Cytokines / analysis*
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay
  • Humans
  • Lymphocyte Activation
  • Lymphocyte Count
  • Lymphocyte Subsets*
  • Macaca fascicularis / blood
  • Macaca fascicularis / immunology*


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Cytokines