Effacing of the T cell compartment by cardiac transplantation in infancy

Brenda M. Ogle, Lori J. West, David J. Driscoll, Scott E. Strome, Raymund R. Razonable, Carlos V. Paya, Marilia Cascalho, Jeffrey L. Platt

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Abstract

For cardiac transplantation in infants, T cells are depleted and the thymus is removed. These manipulations should cause profound defects in the T cell compartment. To test this concept, 20 subjects who underwent cardiac transplantation in infancy and healthy age-matched subjects were studied. The number of T cells in the blood was nearly normal in all subjects 1-10 years after surgery. However, newly generated T cells were undetectable in 10 recipients and 10-fold less than controls in 10, suggesting absence of thymic function. TCRβ chain diversity, measured by a novel technique, was ∼100-fold lower than controls. T cell function, deduced from levels of human herpesvirus 7 and response to hepatitis B immunization, were notably impaired. Yet cardiac transplant recipients were generally free of opportunistic infections. Our findings demonstrate a novel approach to measuring lymphocyte diversity and suggest that understanding how these subjects resist infection could yield important insights into immune fitness.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1962-1967
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Immunology
Volume176
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2006

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology

Cite this

Ogle, B. M., West, L. J., Driscoll, D. J., Strome, S. E., Razonable, R. R., Paya, C. V., Cascalho, M., & Platt, J. L. (2006). Effacing of the T cell compartment by cardiac transplantation in infancy. Journal of Immunology, 176(3), 1962-1967. https://doi.org/10.4049/jimmunol.176.3.1962