Characterization of human thymic epithelial cell surface antigens: phenotypic similarity of thymic epithelial cells to epidermal keratinocytes.
Cellular interactions between developing thymocytes and cells of the thymic microenvironment are necessary for maturation of thymocytes into mature T cells. While much is known about the molecules on developing T cells that mediate these interactions, little is known about the surface molecules of human thymic epithelial (TE) cells. In this study, using a panel of 276 MAb including 255 MAb from the 5th International Workshop on Human Leukocyte Differentiation Antigens (HLDA-V), we have determined the expression of CD1 through CDw130 and other surface molecules on resting and IFN-gamma-activated cultured human TE cells and on resting epidermal keratinocytes (EK). We demonstrate the surface expression of 50 of the 161 molecules assayed for on TE cells, including a number of adhesion molecules, cytokine receptors, Apo-1, and MHC-encoded molecules. While activation of TE cells with IFN-gamma for 48 hr induced a greater than fivefold increase in the expression of four surface molecules (CD38, CD54, MHC class I, and MHC class II), it also induced a greater than 50% increase in the expression of 14 other surface molecules (CD12, CD29, CD40, CD44, CD47, CD49b, CD49c, CD49e, CD55, CD66, CD87, CD104, TE4, and STE3) and a decrease in the expression of three molecules (CDw65, CDw109, and STE2). In comparing the phenotype of TE cells to 83 other cell lines studied in HLDA-V, we found that TE cells were strikingly more similar to EK than to any of the other cell types tested.
Patel, DD; Whichard, LP; Radcliff, G; Denning, SM; Haynes, BF
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