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J Clin Immunol. 1993 Mar;13(2):113-8.

Circulating CD3+ CD4+ CD8+ T lymphocytes in multiple sclerosis.

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  • 1Baird Multiple Sclerosis Research Center, Department of Neurology, State University of New York, Buffalo.


Triple-antibody flow cytometry was used to search for distinctive populations of peripheral blood lymphocyte immunophenotypes in multiple sclerosis (MS). Using monoclonal antibodies to the cell surface markers CD3, CD4, and CD8, T cell subsets were quantified on a cohort of 31 MS patients (not treated with corticosteroids for at least 6 months), 30 healthy donors, and 14 patients with other autoimmune diseases (also corticosteroid treatment-free for at least 6 months). Untreated MS patients displayed a significantly greater population of CD3+CD4+CD8+ circulating T cells than healthy donors (P = 0.023). Patients with other autoimmune diseases displayed mean populations of CD3+CD4+CD8+ cells greater than normal donors and less than MS, but not significantly different from either. An additional 45 MS patients who had received corticosteroid therapy within the previous 6 months were phenotyped. Treatment of symptomatic MS with corticosteroids was associated with a smaller population of circulating CD3+CD4+CD8+ cells. Some MS patients have significantly greater numbers of peripheral blood T lymphocytes simultaneously expressing CD3, CD4, and CD8 surface markers than healthy donors and this population of cells may be reduced by corticosteroids treatment. This triple positive phenotype may be a manifestation of a systemic immune abnormality in MS.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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