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van den Heuvel, Heleen; Heutinck, Kirstin M.; van der Meer-Prins, Ellen P.M.W.; Yong, Si La; Claas, Frans H.J.; ten Berge, Ineke J.M. (2015)
Publisher: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins
Journal: Transplantation Direct
Languages: English
Types: Article
Subjects: Original Basic Science

Classified by OpenAIRE into

ACM Ref: ComputingMethodologies_DOCUMENTANDTEXTPROCESSING
Background Virus-specific T cells have the intrinsic capacity to cross-react against allogeneic HLA antigens, a phenomenon known as heterologous immunity. In transplantation, these cells may contribute to the alloimmune response and negatively impact graft outcome. This study describes the various techniques that can be used to detect heterologous immune responses of virus-specific CD8+ T cells against allogeneic HLA antigens. The strengths and weaknesses of the different approaches are discussed and illustrated by experimental data. Methods Mixed-lymphocyte reactions (MLRs) were performed to detect allo-HLA cross-reactivity of virus-specific CD8+ T cells in total peripheral blood mononuclear cells. T-cell lines and clones were generated to confirm allo-HLA cross-reactivity by IFN? production and cytotoxicity. In addition, the conventional MLR protocol was adjusted by introducing a 3-day resting phase and subsequent short restimulation with alloantigen or viral peptide, whereupon the expression of IFN?, IL-2, CD107a, and CD137 was determined. Results The accuracy of conventional MLR is challenged by potential bystander activation. T-cell lines and clones can circumvent this issue, yet their generation is laborious and time-consuming. Using the adjusted MLR and restimulation protocol, we found that only truly cross-reactive T cells responded to re-encounter of alloantigen and viral peptide, whereas bystander-activated cells did not. Conclusions The introduction of a restimulation phase improved the accuracy of the MLR as a screening tool for the detection of allo-HLA cross-reactivity by virus-specific CD8+ T cells at bulk level. For detailed characterization of cross-reactive cells, T-cell lines and clones remain the golden standard.

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