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J Immunol. 1999 Jun 15;162(12):7563-8.

C1.7 antigen expression on CD8+ T cells is activation dependent: increased proportion of C1.7+CD8+ T cells in HIV-1-infected patients with progressing disease.

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  • 1The Wistar Institute, Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA.


The C1.7 Ag is a surface marker previously shown to be expressed on all NK cells and on a subset of CD8+ T cells. We report in this study that C1.7 Ag expression on peripheral blood-derived CD8+ T cells overlaps with activation markers S6F1high and CD29high and is reciprocally expressed with CD62L. C1.7 Ag expression can be induced in vitro on CD8+ T cells by anti-CD3 cross-linking, suggesting that C1.7 Ag is activation dependent. In contrast to NK cells, C1.7 Ag does not signal on CD8+ T cells, nor does it induce redirected lysis upon ligation. The proportion of C1.7 Ag+CD8+ T cells is increased in HIV-infected patients compared with healthy donors. In 69 HIV-infected patients, we observed a significant inverse correlation between the percentage of C1.7 Ag-expressing CD8+ T cells and the absolute CD4+ T cell count. Two-year clinical follow-up of patients with initial CD4+ T cell count of >400 cells/mm3 and a normal proportion of C1.7 Ag+CD8+ T cells revealed that these patients were clinically stable with minimal HIV-associated symptoms. In contrast, 10 of 12 patients with CD4+ T cell counts of >400 cells/mm3 and an elevated proportion of C1.7 Ag+CD8+ T cells were symptomatic. ANOVA analysis of patients indicates that C1.7 Ag is a better predictor of disease progression than CD4 count. Overall, our findings indicate that C1.7 Ag is the first described marker for activated/memory CD8+ T cells and a useful parameter for evaluating the level of CD8+ T cell activation in vivo.

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