Monoclonal T-cell expansions in asymptomatic individuals and in patients with large granular leukemia consist of cytotoxic effector T cells expressing the activating CD94:NKG2C/E and NKD2D killer cell receptors

Valerie Bigouret, Till Hoffmann, Lionel Arlettaz, Jean Villard, Marco Colonna, André Ticheli, Alois Gratwohl, Kaveh Samii, Bernard Chapuis, Nathalie Rufer, Eddy Roosnek
Blood 2003 April 15, 101 (8): 3198-204
We have analyzed the phenotype, cytokine profile, and mitotic history (telomere length) of monoclonal T-cell expansions in 5 CD3(+) T-cell large granular lymphocyte (TLGL) leukemia patients by fluorescence activated cell sorting (FACS) and single-cell polymerase chain reaction (PCR). We confirm that the common phenotype of TLGL leukemia is CD3(+)CD8(+)CD45RA(+)CD27(-)CD94(+)(CD57(+)). Interestingly, the C-type lectin-like type killer cell receptor CD94 was invariably associated with the activating form of its signal-transducing molecule NKG2. Furthermore, when judged by criteria such as interferon gamma (IFN-gamma)/tumor necrosis factor (TNF) production, expression of granzyme, FasL, and NKG2D, the TLGL cells had all the features of a cytotoxic effector T cell. Telomere shortening in TLGL cells was in the normal range for CD8(+) T cells, indicating that they had not divided significantly more than chronically stimulated CD8(+) T cells in healthy individuals. In 25 of 27 controls, cells with a TLGL phenotype occurred at low (1%-3%) frequencies. However, in the other 2 individuals (ages 28-36 years), large stable (> 3 years) monoclonal expansions of CD3(+)CD8(+)CD45RA(+)CD27(-)CD57(+)CD94(+) NKG2C(+) were found which rendered these controls phenotypically indistinguishable from TLGL leukemia patients. We believe that the TLGL clonopathy, rather than being of a neoplastic nature, is more likely an extreme manifestation of the large and stable clonal size characteristic of CD8(+) effector cells. Such a TLGL clone consisting of cells without any particular pathologic trait might exist in a considerable number of individuals. Clinical symptoms may occur in individuals in whom the TLGL clone encounters antigen and is triggered to produce large amounts of effector molecules that dysregulate the immune system, which could manifest itself as autoimmunity or as a FasL-mediated neutropenia.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Trending Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"