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J Immunol Methods. 2000 Mar 6;236(1-2):27-35.

Chemical agents and enzymes used for the extraction of gut lymphocytes influence flow cytometric detection of T cell surface markers.

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Department of Rheumatology, Ghent University Hospital, Ghent University, De Pintelaan 185, 9000, Ghent, Belgium.


Chemical agents (DTT, EDTA) and enzymes (collagenase, DNAse) are often used for the generation of a single cell suspension from tissue samples. In this study, flow cytometry was used to examine the effect of chemical agents and enzymes on the expression of cell membrane markers of T lymphocytes from tonsils and peripheral blood. Expression of CD4, CD8, CD25, CD38, L-selectin, CD44, alphaEbeta7 and alpha4beta7 were studied. Incubation of lymphocytes with DTT and EDTA resulted in a decrease of CD38, alphaEbeta7 and alpha4beta7 expression. Incubation with collagenase A and DNAse resulted in a decrease of CD25, L-selectin, alphaEbeta7 and alpha4beta7. The results of this study indicate that a careful interpretation is necessary for phenotypic descriptions of lymphocyte populations obtained by enzymatic isolation techniques.

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