CD4+ Epstein-Barr virus-specific cytotoxic T-lymphocytes from human umbilical cord blood

Qi Sun, Robert L. Burton, Karen E. Pollok, David J. Emanuel, Kenneth G. Lucas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

50 Scopus citations


Umbilical cord blood (CB) is increasingly used for allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. To determine whether viral antigen- specific cytotoxic T-lymphocytes (CTL) could be generated from the predominantly naive T-cell populations in CB, CB-derived mononuclear cells were stimulated with autologous Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) transformed B- lymphoblastoid cell lines over several weeks in the presence of recombinant human interleukin-2 (IL-2). By 28 days of culture, T-lymphocytes from all six CB that had been treated with IL-2 displayed EBV-specific cytotoxicity. These cells were largely CD4+, with complete inhibition of cytotoxicity by anti- CD3 and variable inhibition by anti-HLA DR monoclonal antibodies. The EBV- specific effectors were cloned by limiting dilution, and most of the CTL clones were CD4+. The cytotoxicity of the CB-derived CD4+ CTL clones was inhibited by EGTA but not by anti-Fas ligand mAb, suggesting that this cytotoxicity was mediated by perforin/granzyme B. These data indicate that virus-specific CTL can be cultivated and cloned from CB, a human T-cell source that may not have prior in vivo antigenic exposure or reactivity. This finding may have applications in adoptive immunotherapy to recipients of CB transplants.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)81-88
Number of pages8
JournalCellular Immunology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 1 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology

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