Multiple CTL specificities against autologous HIV-1-infected BLCLs.
The cellular immune response to HIV-1 has been well studied but, in many respects, remains incompletely defined. Although CTL specificities against highly conserved HIV-1 determinants as dictated by vaccinia/HIV-1 vector constructs have been described, much less is known regarding patient cellular reactivities against autologous cells infected with HIV-1. One of the main obstacles in characterizing this cellular reactivity has been the absence of a targeting system which accurately represents the HIV infected cell in vivo and is, at the same time, adaptable for in vitro assays. Through the use of two separate strategies aimed at increasing cellular CD4 expression, we were able to infect B-lymphocyte cell lines (BLCLs) with multiple strains of HIV-1. HIV-1-infected BLCLs were recognized by autologous effector cells with cytolytic specificities against env, gag, or pol determinants. In addition, HIV-1-infected BLCLs were capable of eliciting in vitro CTL reactivities directed against env-, gag-, and pol-expressing targets. This cellular reactivity was mediated by CD8+ cells and was MHC Class I restricted, suggesting a classical CTL response. Since multiple antigens are recognized, an HIV-1-infected BLCL is a more natural representation of an in vivo cellular target than other available testing systems and should permit a more representative analysis of CTL responses during infection or following vaccination.
Ahearne, PM; Morgan, RA; Sebastian, MW; Bolognesi, DP; Weinhold, KJ
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