Mitogenic response of human thymocytes

Identification of functional Ca2+-dependent and independent signals

C. M. Roifman, Gordon Mills, R. K. Cheung, E. W. Gelfand

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In contrast to peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC), human thymocytes do not exhibit a proliferative response to the T cell mitogens phytohaemagglutinin (PHA), concanavalin A (Con A), or Staphylococcal protein A (SPA). In thymocytes and PBMC, Con A and PHA induce increases in free cytosolic calcium concentrations ([Ca2+](i)). Since both Con A and PHA induce similar increases in [Ca2+](i) in thymocytes and PBMC, the absence of thymocyte proliferation was not due to an inability to induce an increase in [Ca2+](i). The lack of a proliferative response was secondary to the failure of the mitogens to induce interleukin 2 (IL-2) production. Incubation of mitogen-treated thymocytes with phorbol esters reconstituted IL-2 production and the proliferative response indicating that the cells were indeed activated by the mitogens. Similarly, addition of exogenous recombinant IL-2 also induced mitogen-treated thymocytes to proliferate. This IL-2-dependent proliferation established that SPA, Con A, and PHA triggered the expression of biologically active IL-2 receptors. Since an increase in [Ca2+](i) is a prerequisite, and possibly a trigger, for IL-2 production, the failure of PHA, Con A, or SPA to result in thymocyte proliferation may be due to an inability of thymocytes to respond to increases in [Ca2+ ](i) with subsequent IL-2 production.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)139-149
Number of pages11
JournalClinical and Experimental Immunology
Volume66
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 1986
Externally publishedYes

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Forensic Anthropology
Thymocytes
Phytohemagglutinins
Interleukin-2
Concanavalin A
Mitogens
Staphylococcal Protein A
Blood Cells
Interleukin-2 Receptors
Phorbol Esters
Calcium
T-Lymphocytes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology

Cite this

Mitogenic response of human thymocytes : Identification of functional Ca2+-dependent and independent signals. / Roifman, C. M.; Mills, Gordon; Cheung, R. K.; Gelfand, E. W.

In: Clinical and Experimental Immunology, Vol. 66, No. 1, 01.01.1986, p. 139-149.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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