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J Immunol. 2005 Nov 15;175(10):6352-60.

Interaction between human NK cells and bone marrow stromal cells induces NK cell triggering: role of NKp30 and NKG2D receptors.

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Laboratory of Experimental Oncology D, National Cancer Research Institute, Genoa, Italy.


In this study we have analyzed the interaction between in vitro cultured bone marrow stromal cells (BMSC) and NK cells. Ex vivo-isolated NK cells neoexpressed the activation Ag CD69 and released IFN-gamma and TNF-alpha upon binding with BMSC. Production of these proinflammatory cytokines was dependent on ligation of ICAM1 expressed on BMSC and its receptor LFA1 on NK cells. Furthermore, the NKp30, among natural cytotoxicity receptors, appeared to be primarily involved in triggering NK cells upon interaction with BMSC. Unexpectedly, autologous IL-2-activated NK cells killed BMSC. Again, LFA1/ICAM1 interaction plays a key role in NK/BMSC interaction; this interaction is followed by a strong intracellular calcium increase in NK cells. More importantly, NKG2D/MHC-I-related stress-inducible molecule A and/or NKG2D/UL-16 binding protein 3 engagement is responsible for the delivery of a lethal hit. It appears that HLA-I molecules do not protect BMSC from NK cell-mediated injury. Thus, NK cells, activated upon binding with BMSC, may regulate BMSC survival.

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