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Virology. 1997 Dec 22;239(2):259-68.

Efficient virus transmission from dendritic cells to CD4+ T cells in response to antigen depends on close contact through adhesion molecules.

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Department of Immunology, National Institute of infectious diseases, Tokyo, Japan.


Monocyte-derived cultured dendritic cells (DCs) are potent antigen-presenting cells (APCs) and are susceptible to HIV-1Lai infection. Compared to the low level of virus production by HIV-1-infected DCs alone, a level of virus two to three orders of magnitude higher was produced by cocultivation of HIV-1-infected DCs with autologous resting CD4+ T cells in the presence of a nominal antigen. In this coculture system, direct contact of HIV-1-infected DCs with T cells was crucial for efficient virus transmission and subsequent virus production. Blocking of the LFA-1/ICAM-1 or LFA-3/CD2 interaction between these cells substantially reduced virus production, without influence or IL-2 production by activated T cells. In contrast, cell-cell transmission of HIV between non-APCs and activated T cells was not blocked by an antibody against LFA-3. Since a low level of virus production by HIV-infected DCs was upregulated by cross-linking of CD40, it was suggested that not only focal adhesion, but also mutual activation of HIV-infected DCs and T cells through adhesion molecules, may potentiate virus transmission and production and that such activation signals to HIV may be distinct from signals responsible for IL-2 production in activated T cells.

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