The purpose of this study was to investigate, by double-labeling immunofluorescence, lymphocyte subsets in the peripheral blood of healthy children, adults, and aged individuals. The absolute number of T and B lymphocytes decreases with age. The decline in T cells was attributed to a decrease in CD4 lymphocytes. We also found that the composition of the CD4 subset changes with age: in children the CD45R molecule is expressed on the majority of CD4 cells, whereas in aged subjects the absolute number of these lymphocytes is greatly reduced. The reciprocal CD4 CD29 population is not modified during the life span. Aging is also associated with the appearance of CD8 Leu 7 lymphocytes. Putative contrasuppressor cells, identified by Vicia villosa binding, represent a very small population in peripheral blood and are not subject to age-dependent variations.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine