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Transplant Proc. 2011 Oct;43(8):2917-21. doi: 10.1016/j.transproceed.2011.08.016.

Human peripheral blood CD8+ CD28- T cells of renal allograft recipients do not express FOXP3 protein.

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  • 1Department of Immunology, Faculty of Biology, University of Warsaw, Poland.



In recent studies, the FOXP3 molecule has been suggested to be a marker of a suppressor subset of human CD8+ CD28- T cells based on correlations between the level of its mRNA and allograft function. Because this transcriptional factor produces a protein, we suggest that these correlations should focus on the FOXP3 protein. The aim of our study was to evaluate whether FOXP3 protein was present in cells of the CD8+ CD28- population in the peripheral blood of renal allograft recipients and whether the level of CD8+ CD28- FOXP3+ cells correlated with allograft function.


The study was performed on 30 renal allograft recipients with uneventful stable courses (n=18) or biopsy-proven chronic rejection (n=12). The immunosuppression was based on cyclosporine (n=12) or rapamycin (n=9). Peripheral blood mononuclear cells isolated from recipient blood samples were labeled with anti-CD8 and anti-CD28 MAbs conjugated with fluorochromes. After incubation, washing, and labeling using a PE anti-human FOXP3 Kit, we determined the percentage of cells by flow cytometry.


FOXP3 protein expression was not observed either in the CD8+ CD28- population, or the whole populations of CD8+ or CD28- cells among patient groups.


The expression of FOXP3 protein in CD8+ CD28- cells seems to be of a questionable value as a diagnostic tool for allograft function, it is probably not a marker for the CD8+ CD28- T cell subset.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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