Dual effect of CD85/leukocyte Ig-like receptor-1/Ig-like transcript 2 and CD152 (CTLA-4) on cytokine production by antigen-stimulated human T cells

D. Saverino, A. Merlo, S. Bruno, V. Pistoia, C. E. Grossi, E. Ciccone

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The functional outcome of a T cell response to Ag is the result of a balance between coactivation and inhibitory signals. In this study we have investigated the effects of the CD85/leukocyte Ig-like receptor (LIR)-1/Ig-like transcript (ILT) 2 and of CD152 (CTLA-4) inhibitory receptors on the modulation of cell-mediated immune responses to specific Ags, both at the effector and at the resting/memory cell level. Proliferation and cytokine production of CD4+ T lymphocytes stimulated by recall Ags have been evaluated. Cross-linking of CD85/LIR-1/ILT2 or CD152 molecules on cultured T cells using specific mAb and goat anti-mouse antiserum inhibits Ag-specific T cell proliferation. This inhibition is always paralleled by increased production of cytokines that down-regulate immune responses, e.g., IL-10 and TGF-β. In contrast, the production of cytokines that support T cell expansion and function (e.g., IL-2, IFN-γ, and IL-13) is significantly decreased. A long-term effect of CD85/LIR-1/ILT2 and of CD152 occurs during Ag-specific T cell activation and expansion. T cells, primed in the presence of anti-CD85/LIR-1/ILT2 and anti-CD152 blocking mAb (but in the absence of cross-linking), proliferate at higher rates and produce higher amounts of IL-2, IFN-γ, and IL-13, in comparison with T cells stimulated with the Ag alone. We also show that the inhibitory receptors exert a similar effect during Ag activation of specific CD4+ effector T cells. Ag-specific polyclonal CD4+ T cell lines exhibit increased proliferation and IL-2, IFN-γ, and IL-13 production when the CD85/LIR-1/ILT2 receptor is blocked by specific mAb. In contrast, cross-linking of this receptor down-regulates Ag-specific CD4+ T cell proliferation and increases IL-10 and TGF-β production.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)207-215
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Immunology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2002


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology

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