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Leuk Res. 1986;10(1):35-42.

Antigenic heterogeneity among Burkitt's lymphoma cells surviving treatment with monoclonal antibody and complement.


Selective removal of malignant cells from human bone marrow is one requirement for autologous bone marrow transplantation. In earlier studies treatment with multiple monoclonal antibodies and C' was more effective than treatment with individual reagents in eliminating clonogenic Burkitt's lymphoma cells from a twenty-fold excess of human bone marrow. To explore possible mechanisms underlying the additive or synergistic effects observed with multiple reagents, clones of malignant cells that have survived treatment with antibody and C' have now been isolated at limiting dilution. Marked heterogeneity has been observed in binding of different monoclonal antibodies and in resistance to C'-dependent lysis among these different clones. Phenotypic traits were stable for at least two weeks in culture. Clones that survived treatment with the J5 anti-CALLA antibody and C' exhibited a relative decrease in CALLA expression but did not exhibit an increased susceptibility to lysis by anti-CALLA and C'. No selective decrease in gp-26 or B1 was observed in clones treated with J2 or anti-B1. A correlation between CALLA and gp-26 expression was observed in clones treated with J2 and anti-B1, but no clear correlation was observed between antigen expression and susceptibility to C'-dependent lysis. In this model system, escape from C' dependent cytotoxicity does not appear related to the existence of phenotypically stable C' resistant variants within the tumor cell population.

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