Coexpression of two functionally independent p58 inhibitory receptors in human natural killer cell clones results in the inability to kill all normal allogeneic target cells

M. Vitale, S. Sivori, D. Pende, L. Moretta, A. Moretta

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


In the present study, we define a group of natural killer (NK) clones (group 0) that fails to lyse all of the normal allogeneic target cells analyzed. Their specificity for HLA class I molecules was suggested by their ability to lyse class I-negative target cells and by the fact that they could lyse resistant target cells in the presence of selected anti-class I monoclonal antibodies. The use of appropriate target cells represented by either HLA-homozygous cell lines or cell transfectants revealed that these clones recognized all the HLA-C alleles. By the use of monoclonal antibodies directed to either GL183 or EB6 molecules, we showed that the EB6 molecules were responsible for the recognition of Cw4 and related alleles, while the GL183 molecules recognized Cw3 (and related C alleles). These data suggest that the GL183 and the EB6 molecules can function, in individual NK clones, as independent receptors for two different groups of HLA-C alleles, (which include all known alleles fur locus C), thus resulting in their inability to lyse all normal HLA-C+ target cells. Indirect immunofluorescence and fluorescence-activated cell sorting analysis revealed that the presently defined GL183+EB6+ group 0 NK clones brightly express EB6 molecules (EB6(bright)) while the GL183+EB6+ group 2 clones (unable to recognize Cw4) express an EB6(dull) phenotype. These data also imply that the density of EB6 receptors may be critical for the generation of an optimal negative signal upon interaction with appropriate HLA-C alleles.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3536-3540
Number of pages5
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 1995


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General
  • Genetics

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