Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Clin Vaccine Immunol. 2008 Apr;15(4):585-9. doi: 10.1128/CVI.00161-07. Epub 2008 Feb 20.

Optimal blood mononuclear cell isolation procedures for gamma interferon enzyme-linked immunospot testing of healthy Swedish and Tanzanian subjects.

Author information

  • 1Dept. of Immunology and Vaccinology, Swedish Institute for Infectious Disease Control and Karolinska Institute, 171 82 Solna, Sweden.


Determination of antigen-specific T-cell responses is an important part of vaccine assessment. High levels of recovery, viability, and functionality of peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) are essential for reliable assessment of cell-mediated immune responses. Here, we sought to find the cell preparation technique best suited for two clinical vaccine trial sites: Stockholm, Sweden, and Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. Standard Ficoll-Paque gradient centrifugation, BD Vacutainer cell preparation tube (CPT), and Greiner Bio-One LeucoSep tube techniques were tested. Cell yield and viability were recorded. Gamma interferon (IFN-gamma) enzyme-linked immunospot (ELISPOT) testing was used to assess cell functionality. No differences in mean recovery or mean viability of fresh PBMCs were observed between Ficoll-Paque gradient centrifugation and CPT techniques as used in Stockholm. In Dar es Salaam, recovery of PBMCs isolated by use of the Ficoll-Paque gradient technique was higher than that seen with CPT (1.58 +/- 0.6 versus 1.34 +/- 0.4 million cells/ml of blood [P = 0.0469]), and the viability of PBMCs processed by Ficoll-Paque gradient was higher than that seen with CPT-purified cells (95.8% +/- 2.3% versus 92.6% +/- 4.8% [P = 0.0081]). Furthermore, LeucoSep cell separation gave higher levels of yield (1.10 +/- 0.3 versus 0.92 +/- 0.3 million cells/ml of blood [P = 0.0022]) and viability (95.7% +/- 2.0% versus 93.4% +/- 3.2% [P = 0.0012]) than Ficoll-Paque cell separation. The cells purified by the different techniques at the two sites performed equally well in IFN-gamma ELISPOT assays. Both techniques generated cell preparations with excellent yield, viability, and functionality in Stockholm. In Dar es Salaam, CPT did not perform as well as Ficoll-Paque separation. In a subsequent comparison, LeucoSep performed better than Ficoll-Paque separation. Our findings emphasize the need for on-site assessment of PBMC purification techniques for optimal evaluation of cell-mediated immune responses.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Support Center