Natural killer cells are characterized by the lack of CD3/TCR molecules and by the expression of CD16 and CD56 (NKHI or Leu 19) surface antigens. In addition to their ability to lyse certain tumor target cells, they release lymphokines including tumor necrosis factor and interferon gamma. Another unexpected functional capability of at least some NK cells is the ability to specifically recognize and lyse certain normal allogeneic cells (PHA‐induced blasts). MAbs directed to CD2 or to CD 16 surface molecules induced triggering of NK cells leading to target cell (p815) lysis in a redirected killing assay. Importantly, different from induction of T cell activation, single anti‐CD2 MAbs were sufficient to trigger NK cell function. Another MAb (GL183) inducing NK cell triggering recognized a novel surface molecules expressed on 20‐50% of resting or cultured NK cells. Cloned GL183+ cells displayed a variable degree of cytolytic activity against a number of human target cells of different histotype; moreover, this activity was strongly enhanced by the addition of GL183 MAb. On the other hand, GL183 MAb inhibited lysis of murine lines (including P815). Thus on P815 target cells GL183 MAb has an effect antithetical to that of other stimuli including PHA, anti‐CD2 or anti‐CD16 MAbs. GL183 MAb, added simultaneously to one or another of the stimuli above, strongly inhibited the target cell lysis induced by these stimuli. Thus, GL183 may represent an important molecule in the process of activation/regulation of phenotypically‐defined NK cell subsets.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research