We prospectively assessed functional and phenotypic characteristics of γδ T lymphocytes up to 7 months after HLA-haploidentical hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (haplo-HSCT) depleted of αβ+ T cells and CD19+ B cells in 27 children with either malignant or nonmalignant disorders. We demonstrate that (1) γδ T cells are the predominant T-cell population in patients during the first weeks after transplantation, being mainly, albeit not only, derived from cells infused with the graft and expanding in vivo; (2) central-memory cells predominated very early posttransplantation for both Vδ1 and Vδ2 subsets; (3) Vδ1 cells are specifically expanded in patients experiencing cytomegalovirus reactivation and are more cytotoxic compared with those of children who did not experience reactivation; (4) these subsets display a cytotoxic phenotype and degranulate when challenged with primary acute myeloid and lymphoid leukemia blasts; and (5) Vδ2 cells are expanded in vitro after exposure to zoledronic acid (ZOL) and efficiently lyse primary lymphoid and myeloid blasts. This is the first detailed characterization of γδ T cells emerging in peripheral blood of children after CD19+ B-cell and αβ+ T-cell-depleted haplo-HSCT. Our results can be instrumental to the development of clinical trials using ZOL for improving γδ T-cell killing capacity against leukemia cells. This trial was registered at www.clinicaltrials.gov as #NCT01810120.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cell Biology