Canine CD4+CD8+ double positive T cells in peripheral blood have features of activated T cells

Doris Bismarck, Nicole Schütze, Peter F Moore, Mathias Büttner, Gottfried Alber, Heiner v. Buttlar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations


In dogs a CD4+CD8+ double positive T cell subpopulation exists that has not been phenotypically defined yet. We demonstrate that canine CD4+CD8+ T cells are mature CD1a- and TCRαβ+ T cells. To analyse the activation potential of CD4+CD8+ T cells, PBMC from dogs vaccinated against canine distemper virus (CDV) were re-stimulated with CDV. Upon antigen-specific stimulation, the CD4+CD8+ T cell fraction increases and consists nearly exclusively of proliferated cells. Similarly, other features of activated effector/memory T cells such as up-regulation of CD25 and MHC-II as well as down-regulation of CD62L (L-selectin) were observed in CD4+CD8+ T cells after stimulation. Canine CD4+CD8+ T cells are less abundant, but more heterogeneous than porcine ones, comprising a small proportion expressing the β chain of CD8 in addition to the CD8α chain, like human CD4+CD8+ T cells. In summary, this analysis provides the basis for functional characterisation of the in vivo relevance of CD4+CD8+ T cells in T-cell mediated immunity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)157-166
Number of pages10
JournalVeterinary Immunology and Immunopathology
Issue number3-4
StatePublished - Oct 15 2012


  • Activated phenotype
  • CD4CD8 T cells
  • CD8 composition
  • Dog
  • Peripheral blood
  • Viral re-stimulation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • veterinary(all)


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