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1.  Assessment of the Phenotype and Functionality of Porcine CD8 T Cell Responses following Vaccination with Live Attenuated Classical Swine Fever Virus (CSFV) and Virulent CSFV Challenge 
Clinical and Vaccine Immunology : CVI  2013;20(10):1604-1616.
Vaccination with live attenuated classical swine fever virus (CSFV) induces solid protection after only 5 days, which has been associated with virus-specific T cell gamma interferon (IFN-γ) responses. In this study, we employed flow cytometry to characterize T cell responses following vaccination and subsequent challenge infections with virulent CSFV. The CD3+ CD4− CD8hi T cell population was the first and major source of CSFV-specific IFN-γ. A proportion of these cells showed evidence for cytotoxicity, as evidenced by CD107a mobilization, and coexpressed tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α). To assess the durability and recall of these responses, a second experiment was conducted where vaccinated animals were challenged with virulent CSFV after 5 days and again after a further 28 days. While virus-specific CD4 T cell (CD3+ CD4+ CD8α+) responses were detected, the dominant response was again from the CD8 T cell population, with the highest numbers of these cells being detected 14 and 7 days after the primary and secondary challenges, respectively. These CD8 T cells were further characterized as CD44hi CD62L− and expressed variable levels of CD25 and CD27, indicative of a mixed effector and effector memory phenotype. The majority of virus-specific IFN-γ+ CD8 T cells isolated at the peaks of the response after each challenge displayed CD107a on their surface, and subpopulations that coexpressed TNF-α and interleukin 2 (IL-2) were identified. While it is hoped that these data will aid the rational design and/or evaluation of next-generation marker CSFV vaccines, the novel flow cytometric panels developed should also be of value in the study of porcine T cell responses to other pathogens/vaccines.
PMCID: PMC3807209  PMID: 23966552
2.  Radiation up-regulates the expression of VEGF in a canine oral melanoma cell line 
Journal of Veterinary Science  2013;14(2):207-214.
To evaluate radiosensitivity and the effects of radiation on the expression of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and VEGF receptors in the canine oral melanoma cell line, TLM 1, cells were irradiated with doses of 0, 2, 4, 6, 8 and 10 Gray (Gy). Survival rates were then determined by a MTT assay, while vascular endothelial growth factor receptor (VEGFR)-1 and -2 expression was measured by flow cytometry and apoptotic cell death rates were investigated using an Annexin assay. Additionally, a commercially available canine VEGF ELISA kit was used to measure VEGF. Radiosensitivity was detected in TLM 1 cells, and mitotic and apoptotic cell death was found to occur in a radiation dose dependent manner. VEGF was secreted constitutively and significant up-regulation was observed in the 8 and 10 Gy irradiated cells. In addition, a minor portion of TLM 1 cells expressed vascular endothelial growth factor receptor (VEGFR)-1 intracellularly. VEGFR-2 was detected in the cytoplasm and was down-regulated following radiation with increasing dosages. In TLM 1 cells, apoptosis plays an important role in radiation induced cell death. It has also been suggested that the significantly higher VEGF production in the 8 and 10 Gy group could lead to tumour resistance.
PMCID: PMC3694193  PMID: 23814474
cell line; radiation; TLM 1; vascular endothelial growth factor
3.  Porcine CD8αdim/-NKp46high NK cells are in a highly activated state 
Veterinary Research  2013;44(1):13.
Natural Killer (NK) cells play a crucial role in the early phase of immune responses against various pathogens. In swine so far only little information about this lymphocyte population exists. Phenotypical analyses with newly developed monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) against porcine NKp46 recently revealed that in blood NKp46- and NKp46+ cells with NK phenotype exist with comparable cytotoxic properties. In spleen a third NKp46-defined population with NK phenotype was observed that was characterised by a low to negative CD8α and increased NKp46 expression. In the current study it is shown that this NKp46high phenotype was correlated with an increased expression of CD16 and CD27 compared to the CD8α+NKp46- and NKp46+ NK-cell subsets in spleen and blood. Additionally NKp46high NK cells expressed elevated levels of the chemokine receptor CXCR3 on mRNA level. Functional analyses revealed that splenic NKp46high NK cells produced much higher levels of Interferon-γ and Tumor Necrosis Factor-α upon stimulation with cytokines or phorbol-12-myristate-13-acetate/Ionomycin compared to the other two subsets. Furthermore, cross-linking of NKp46 by NKp46-specific mAbs led to a superior CD107a expression in the NKp46high NK cells, thus indicating a higher cytolytic capacity of this subset. Therefore porcine splenic NKp46high NK cells represent a highly activated subset of NK cells and may play a profound role in the immune surveillance of this organ.
PMCID: PMC3599810  PMID: 23452562
4.  CD27 expression discriminates porcine T helper cells with functionally distinct properties 
Veterinary Research  2013;44(1):18.
Differentiation of porcine T helper cells is still poorly investigated, partly due to a lack of monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) specific for molecules involved in this process. Recently, we identified a mAb specific for porcine CD27 and showed that CD27 is expressed by all naïve CD8α- T helper cells but divides CD8α+ T helper cells into a CD27+ and a CD27- subset. In the present study, detailed phenotypical and functional analyses of these T-helper cell subpopulations were performed. Naïve CD8α-CD27+ T helper cells predominantly resided in various lymph nodes, whereas higher proportions of CD8α+CD27+ and CD8α+CD27- T helper cells were found in blood, spleen and liver. Both CD8α+CD27+ and CD8α+CD27- T helper cells were capable of producing IFN-γ upon in vitro polyclonal stimulation and antigen-specific restimulation. Experiments with sorted CD8α-CD27+, CD8α+CD27+ and CD8α+CD27- T-helper cell subsets following polyclonal stimulation revealed the lowest proliferative response but the highest ability for IFN-γ and TNF-α production in the CD8α+CD27- subset. Therefore, these cells resembled terminally differentiated effector memory cells as described in human. This was supported by analyses of CCR7 and CD62L expression. CD8α+CD27- T helper cells were mostly CCR7- and had considerably reduced CD62L mRNA levels. In contrast, expression of both homing-receptors was increased on CD8α+CD27+ T helper cells, which also had a proliferation rate similar to naïve CD8α-CD27+ T helper cells and showed intermediate levels of cytokine production. Therefore, similar to human, CD8α+CD27+ T helper cells displayed a phenotype and functional properties of central memory cells.
PMCID: PMC3610194  PMID: 23497134
5.  Coronavirus nsp6 proteins generate autophagosomes from the endoplasmic reticulum via an omegasome intermediate 
Autophagy  2011;7(11):1335-1347.
Autophagy is a cellular response to starvation which generates autophagosomes to carry cellular organelles and long-lived proteins to lysosomes for degradation. Degradation through autophagy can provide an innate defense against virus infection, or conversely autophagosomes can promote infection by facilitating assembly of replicase proteins. We demonstrate that the avian coronavirus, infectious bronchitis virus (IBV), activates autophagy. A screen of individual IBV nonstructural proteins (nsps) showed that autophagy was activated by IBV nsp6. This property was shared with nsp6 of mammalian coronaviruses mouse hepatitis virus, and severe acute respiratory syndrome virus, and the equivalent nsp5–7 of the arterivirus porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus. These multiple-spanning transmembrane proteins located to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) where they generated Atg5 and LC3II -positive vesicles, and vesicle formation was dependent on Atg5 and class III PI3 kinase. The vesicles recruited double-FYVE-domain containing protein (DFCP) indicating localized concentration of phosphatidylinositol 3 phosphate, and therefore shared many features with omegasomes formed from the ER in response to starvation. Omegasomes induced by viral nsp6 matured into autophagosomes that delivered LC3 to lysosomes and therefore recruited and recycled the proteins needed for autophagosome nucleation, expansion, cellular trafficking and delivery of cargo to lysosomes. The coronavirus nsp6 proteins activated omegasome and autophagosome formation independently of starvation, but activation did not involve direct inhibition of mTOR signaling, activation of sirtuin 1 or induction of ER stress.
PMCID: PMC3242798  PMID: 21799305
autophagy; omegasome; endoplasmic reticulum; coronavirus; nonstructural proteins
6.  Porcine SWC1 is CD52—Final determination by the use of a retroviral cDNA expression library 
During the last decades for several species – e.g. swine – many mAb to leukocyte-specific molecules have been developed and clusters of differentiation corresponding to human CD could be established. However, for a significant amount of the raised mAb the corresponding antigens were not characterized on the molecular level and therefore preliminary clusters – in swine so-called Swine workshop clusters (SWC) – were established. These clusters contain antigens with currently no obvious orthologs to human leukocyte differentiation antigens. In this study, we describe the generation of a eukaryotic cDNA expression library from in vitro activated porcine peripheral blood mononuclear cells. Screening of this library with an antibody recognizing SWC1 enabled isolation and sequencing of cDNAs coding for the porcine SWC1 molecule. A BLAST search of the obtained sequence revealed that SWC1 is the orthologous molecule of human CD52. Therefore, our study provides the basis for comparative studies on the role of CD52 in different mammalian species. In addition, the established cDNA library can be used for investigation of additional SWC-defined molecules.
PMCID: PMC3334673  PMID: 22336037
Porcine leukocytes; SWC1; CD52; Eukaryotic expression cloning; Porcine cDNA library
7.  Identification of Major Histocompatibility Complex Restriction and Anchor Residues of Foot-and-Mouth Disease Virus-Derived Bovine T-Cell Epitopes▿  
Journal of Virology  2009;83(9):4039-4050.
Despite intensive research on the identification of T-cell epitopes in cattle after foot-and-mouth disease virus (FMDV) infection during the last 20 years, knowledge of major histocompatibility complex (MHC) restriction and anchor residues of such epitopes is still sparse. Therefore, as a first step, we tested lymphocytes from two experimentally FMDV serotype A24-vaccinated and -challenged cattle for recognition of FMDV-derived pentadecapeptides in proliferation assays. Two epitopes were identified: amino acid residues 66 to 80 within the structural protein 1D and amino acid residues 22 to 36 within the structural protein 1A. The latter epitope was recognized by lymphocytes from both cattle. Peptide-specific proliferation was caused by a response of CD4+ T helper cells as identified by carboxyfluorescein diacetate succinimidyl ester proliferation assays. Having identified one epitope that was recognized by two cattle, we hypothesized that these animals should have common MHC class II alleles. Cloning and sequencing of DRB3, DQA, and DQB alleles revealed that both animals possessed DQA allele 22021 and DQB allele 1301 but had no common DRB3 allele. A parallel analysis of amino acid residues involved in MHC presentation by peptides with alanine substitutions showed that the amino acid residues in positions 5 and 9 within the pentadecapeptide representing the 1A epitope were important for MHC binding in both cattle. These data indicate that the epitope located on FMDV protein 1A can be presented by MHC class II DQ molecules encoded by DQA allele 22021 and DQB allele 1301 and present the first evidence of the binding motif of this particular DQ molecule.
PMCID: PMC2668444  PMID: 19211750

Results 1-7 (7)