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Respir Med. 2010 Mar;104(3):454-62. doi: 10.1016/j.rmed.2009.10.004. Epub 2009 Oct 31.

T lymphocyte subset abnormalities in the blood and lung in pulmonary arterial hypertension.

Author information

  • 1Department of Pediatrics, Division of Pulmonary, Allergy, and Immunology Medicine, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, TN 37232, USA. eric.austin@vanderbilt.edu

Abstract

RATIONALE:

Mounting data suggest that immune cell abnormalities participate in the pathogenesis of pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH).

OBJECTIVE:

To determine whether the T lymphocyte subset composition in the systemic circulation and peripheral lung is altered in PAH.

METHODS:

Flow cytometric analyses were performed to determine the phenotypic profile of peripheral blood lymphocytes in idiopathic PAH (IPAH) patients (n=18) and healthy controls (n=17). Immunocytochemical analyses of lymphocytes and T cell subsets were used to examine lung tissue from PAH patients (n=11) and controls (n=11).

MEASUREMENTS AND MAIN RESULTS:

IPAH patients have abnormal CD8+ T lymphocyte subsets, with a significant increase in CD45RA+ CCR7- peripheral cytotoxic effector-memory cells (p=0.02) and reduction of CD45RA+ CCR7+ naive CD8+ cells versus controls (p=0.001). Further, IPAH patients have a higher proportion of circulating regulatory T cells (T(reg)) and 4-fold increases in the number of CD3+ and CD8+ cells in the peripheral lung compared with controls (p<0.01).

CONCLUSIONS:

Alterations in circulating T cell subsets, particularly CD8+ T lymphocytes and CD4+ T(reg), in patients with PAH suggest that a dysfunctional immune system contributes to disease pathogenesis. A preponderance of CD3+ and CD8+ T lymphocytes in the peripheral lung of PAH patients supports this concept.

Copyright 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

PMID:
19880300
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC2826574
Free PMC Article
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