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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Cytotoxic mechanisms of murine lymphokine-activated killer cells: functional and biochemical characterization of homogeneous populations of spleen LAK cells.

A highly purified population of murine lymphokine-activated killer (LAK) cells was obtained by selecting plastic-adherent splenocytes after incubation in high doses of recombinant IL-2. The population obtained was shown to be more than 95% positive for the cell marker asialo-GM1, and negative for both Lyt-1 (CD5) and Lyt-2 (CD8). The cells presented typical large granular lymphocyte morphology, and killed NK-susceptible target cells in an exclusively calcium-dependent fashion. A target cell DNA fragmentation activity of LAK cells could be detected even before target cell death. The presence of Hanukkah Factor/granzyme A/serine esterase 1, CTLA-1/granzyme B/serine esterase 2, and pore-forming protein (PFP/perforin) in these LAK cells was demonstrated by Northern blot analysis, suggesting that these markers are not exclusively associated with cytotoxic T lymphocytes. On immunoblots, antibodies specific for a lymphocyte PFP/perforin reacted with a 70-kDa protein of LAK cells. PFP/perforin was localized by immunofluorescence to the cell granules. A 50-kDa protein antigenically related to the macrophage cytokine tumor necrosis factor (TNF) was detected by immunoblotting and localized by immunofluorescence to both the cell granules and the cytosol. No RNA for TNF, however, could be detected using TNF-specific probes, suggesting that LAK cells may contain a cytotoxic factor which is related to, but distinct from, TNF. The work presented here demonstrates that cytotoxic mediators identified in cell lines are also present in primary cell cultures.[1]


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