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A new reagent for the induction of T-cell depletion, anti-CD3-CRM9.

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Laboratory of Molecular Biology, National Institute of Mental Health, Bethesda, Maryland 20892-4034, USA.


We have developed a new reagent for inducing in vivo T-cell depletion and have tested this reagent in rhesus monkeys. The reagent is an anti-CD3 epsilon immunotoxin based on a diphtheria toxin binding-site mutant, CRM9. After administration to monkeys, T cells are depleted from both the blood and lymph node compartments to < 1% of their initial values. T-cell depletion is associated with transient immunosuppression, as judged by delayed rejection of RhLA-mismatched skin allografts. T cells are repopulated in both compartments; however, the rate of repopulation is age dependent. The rate is rapid in juvenile animals (12 days) and requires > 30 days in old animals. The correlation between repopulation rate and age suggests that the repopulation is thymus dependent and that the repopulated T cells are probably naive T cells. This reagent should be a valuable tool in studying the role of memory T cells in rhesus models of autoimmune diseases and protocols of tolerance induction after organ transplantation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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