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Eur J Immunol. 1997 Jan;27(1):189-93.

A novel peripheral CD4+ CD8+ T cell population: inheritance of CD8alpha expression on CD4+ T cells.

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Turku Immunology Center, Department of Medical Microbiology, Turku University, Finland.


In this study we show the inheritance of a CD4+ CD8+ peripheral Tcell population in the H.B15 chicken strain. A large proportion of alphabeta T cells in peripheral blood (20-40%), spleen (10-20%) and intestinal epithelium (5-10%) coexpress CD4 and CD8alpha, but not CD8beta. CD4+ CD8alpha alpha cells are functionally normal T cells, since they proliferate in response to mitogens and signals delivered via the alphabeta T cell receptor as well as via the CD28 co-receptor. These cells induce in vivo a graft versus host-reaction, providing further evidence for their function as CD4+ T cells. The CD4+ CD8alpha alpha T cell population was found in 75% of the first progeny and in 100% of further progenies, demonstrating that coexpression of CD4 and CD8 on peripheral T cells is an inherited phenomenon. In addition, cross-breeding data suggest a dominant Mendelian form of inheritance. The hereditary expression of CD8alpha on peripheral CD4+ T cells in chicken provides a unique model in which to study the regulation of CD4 and CD8 expression.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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