Natural killer cell activity of rhesus macaques against retrovirus-pulsed CD4+ target cells

B. R. Vowels, M. Eric Gershwin, M. B. Gardner, T. P. McGraw

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16 Scopus citations


Rhesus peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) fail to demonstrate natural killer (NK) activity against the human T-cell lines CEM, CEM x 174, or SUP-T1. However, these cell lines could act as NK-sensitive target cells if they were pulsed with heat-inactivated, whole simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV). The ability of these SIV-pulsed T-cell lines to act as NK-sensitive target cells was directly related to the relative density of CD4 on their surface. Target cell generation was inhibited by preincubation of cell lines with CD4 monoclonal antibody (MAb) with specificity for the SIV binding site. In addition, NK activity was seen against target cells that had been prepared with human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) gp120, nonglycosylated gp120, env A of feline leukemia virus (FeLV), and simian type D retrovirus (SRV). Addition of leupeptin to target cells prior to SIV pulsing did not result in a significant decrease in cytotoxic activity, suggesting that processing is not required for the generation of target cells. The cells that mediate NK activity are nonadherent, do not form rosettes with AET-treated sheep red blood cells (SRBC), and are phenotypically CD16+ and CD8+. NK activity of SIV-infected macaques was significantly decreased against both K562 cells and SIV-pulsed target cells as compared with uninfected animals. However, treatment of PBMC with interleukin-2 (IL-2) resulted in a partial restoration of NK activity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)905-918
Number of pages14
JournalAIDS Research and Human Retroviruses
Issue number7
StatePublished - 1990

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Virology


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