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Clin Exp Immunol. 1995 Jun;100(3):543-8.

Age-related changes in surface antigens on peripheral lymphocytes of healthy children.

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Department of Paediatrics, Osaka University Hospital, Suita, Japan.


The age-related changes in proportion of various subsets within lymphocytes were investigated in cord blood and peripheral blood from healthy children and adults. The percentages of T and B cells did not show age-related changes, whereas natural killer (NK) cells increased significantly with age. Within lymphocytes or the CD3+ T cell population the proportion of CD45RAbright+ lymphocytes decreased and that of CD45RO+ cells increased, while that of CD45RAdim+ cells showed no age-related change. Within lymphocytes, the percentage of CD45RAbright+ CD4+ cells decreased, together with a decline of that of CD4+ cells. The proportions of CD45RAbright+ CD8+ cells and S6F1bright+ CD8+ cells increased with age, and the age-dependent increase of the proportion of CD8+ cells seems to be mainly attributable to the increases in these subsets. The CD45RAdim+ CD4+ and CD45RAdim+ CD8+ cells co-expressing CD45RO at a low level nevertheless showed no age-related changes. In gamma delta T cells, both delta TCS1+ and delta TCS1- T cells increased with age, but the delta TCS1- gamma delta T cells increased more than the delta TCS1+ subset. Among lymphocytes, the percentages of CD20+, CD21+ and CD22+ cells remained similar, with no age-related changes, but the proportion of CD5+ cells within lymphocytes or B cells decreased. The proportions of CD16+ NK cells among lymphocytes increased with age, and this change was attributable to the increase of CD56+ cells.

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