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Cell Mol Immunol. 2013 Mar;10(2):159-64. doi: 10.1038/cmi.2012.70. Epub 2013 Jan 28.

Human Vγ9Vδ2-T cells efficiently kill influenza virus-infected lung alveolar epithelial cells.

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Joint Research Center of West China Second University Hospital of Sichuan University and Department of Paediatrics and Adolescent Medicine of University of Hong Kong, Sichuan University, Chengdu 610041, China.


γδ-T cells play an indispensable role in host defense against different viruses, including influenza A virus. However, whether these cells have cytotoxic activity against influenza virus-infected lung alveolar epithelial cells and subsequently contribute to virus clearance remains unknown. Using influenza virus-infected A549 cells, human lung alveolar epithelial cells, we investigated the cytotoxic activity of aminobisphosphonate pamidronate (PAM)-expanded human Vγ9Vδ2-T cells and their underlying mechanisms. We found that PAM could selectively activate and expand human Vγ9Vδ2-T cells. PAM-expanded human Vγ9Vδ2-T cells efficiently killed influenza virus-infected lung alveolar epithelial cells and inhibited virus replication. The cytotoxic activity of PAM-expanded Vγ9Vδ2-T cells was dependent on cell-to-cell contact and required NKG2D activation. Perforin-granzyme B, tumor-necrosis factor-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL) and Fas-Fas ligand (FasL) pathways were involved in their cytotoxicity. Our study suggests that targeting γδ-T cells by PAM can potentially offer an alternative option for the treatment of influenza virus.

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