Herpes simplex virus-1-specific human cytotoxic T lymphocytes are induced in vitro by autologous virus-infected mononuclear cells

R. Maccario, M. G. Revello, P. Comoli, G. Gerna

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

A new technique for in vitro activation of cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTLs) specific for herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) is described. Autologous phytohemagglutinin (PHA)-activated, HSV-1-infected peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) were used, after fixation with 1% paraformaldehyde, to activate virus-specific CTLs in short-term cultures. The same unfixed PBMC were used as target cells in the cytotoxicity assay. By using this technique high levels of HSV-1-specific cytotoxic activity (50.06 ± 16.76% at 30:1 effector:target ratio) were repeatedly obtained in 24 experiments using PBMC from 16 HSV-1 antibody-positive healthy donors, while no cytotoxic activity was observed using PBMC from 3 HSV-1 antibody-negative donors. HSV-1-induced CTLs were shown to be virus-specific as they did not lyse autologous, PHA- activated PBMC infected with influenza A virus or autologous Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) lymphoblastoid cell line (LCL), while they were able to lyse both HSV-1-infected, autologous PHA-activated PBMC and EBV-LCL. HSV-1-specific cytotoxicity was mediated by T lymphocytes, since depletion of CD3-positive cells from the effector population completely removed the killing of HSV-1- infected target cells. CD8-positive CTLs were primarily involved in the killing of HSV-1-infected targets since depletion of CD8-positive cells caused a strong reduction of virus-specific cytotoxic activity while elimination of CD4-positive lymphocytes increased killing capacity. Finally, this technique has proven to be highly reproducible, easy to perform, and thus suitable for clinical investigations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)93-103
Number of pages11
JournalViral Immunology
Volume5
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1992

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Virology

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