Lymphocyte populations and adhesion molecule expression in bovine tonsils

M. C. Rebelatto, C. Mead, H. Hogenesch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Bovine tonsils are mucosal-associated lymphoid tissue (MALT) located at the entry of the pharynx where both inhaled and ingested antigens can induce an immune response. This study was conducted to determine the lymphocyte populations and adhesion molecule expression in the palatine tonsil (PT) and pharyngeal tonsil (PhT) of adult cattle and compare them with typical MALT (discrete Peyer's patches, PP) and a peripheral lymph node (parotid lymph node, PLN). The distribution of various lymphocyte subsets was determined in situ by immunofluorescence, and their proportions were determined by multicolor flow cytometry. The tonsils were similar to PP in the proportions of B- and T-cells (25-32% T-cells, 39-45% B-cells), and T cell subpopulations (CD4, CD8, and γδ). The PP contained the highest proportion of memory T-helper cells with β7 integrin (30.3%±5.4), the tonsils intermediate (PT: 19.8%±4.4 and PhT: 19.7%±4.9), and the PLN had the lowest proportion (15.4%±3.1). The opposite relationship was observed with CD62-L on naive T- helper cells as PP had the lowest proportion (14.2%±6.4), the tonsils intermediate (PT: 17.4%±2.5 and PhT: 24.3%±7.3), and the PLN the highest proportion (45.3%±6.5). MAdCAM-1 was highly expressed in the high endothelial venules (HEV) of PP, with variable and weak expression in the tonsils and PLN. PNAd, on the other hand, was highly expressed in HEV of tonsils and PLN, and weakly expressed in the PP. These results indicate that the bovine tonsils share characteristics with both PP and PLN. The α4β7/MadCAM-1and CD62L/PNAd interaction may be involved in lymphocyte migration to the tonsils, but it is likely that other adhesion molecules participate as well. Similarities between the human and bovine tonsils suggest that cattle may provide a good model to study the role of the tonsil in the respiratory immune response. Copyright (C) 2000 Elsevier Science B.V.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)15-29
Number of pages15
JournalVeterinary Immunology and Immunopathology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 31 2000


  • Adhesion molecules
  • Bovine
  • Homing receptors
  • Lymphocytes
  • Tonsils
  • Vascular addressins

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • veterinary(all)

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