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A differentiation factor required for the expression of cytotoxic T-cell function

Nature volume 296, pages 754757 (22 April 1982) | Download Citation

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Abstract

Effector cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTLs) are induced from resting precursors (small lymphocytes) which do not express cytotoxic activity. The process of CTL activation, which occurs in 2–7 days following mitogen or antigen stimulation, thus involves a differentiation event and normally also involves proliferation. These events in CTL activation seem to be induced, at least in part, by soluble, antigen-nonspecific mediators which reach the CTL precursor as a consequence of cell–cell interactions during the immune response. The initial evidence for this was the finding that in addition to CTL precursors, la-positive macrophage-like accessory cells1–4, and helper T cells5–10 are required for the induction of CTL activity in vitro. Furthermore, the requirement for accessory cells can be replaced with factors present in concanavalin A (Con A)-induced cultures of spleen cells11. There is evidence that T-cell products such as interleukin-2 (IL-2, formerly T-cell growth factor)11–15 as well as accessory cell products, such as inter-leukin-1 (IL-1, formerly lymphocyte activating factor)4,15, are involved in T-cell activation, although the precise roles of these factors in CTL activation are poorly understood. Here we provide evidence for a factor, different from IL-1 and IL-2, which is present in supernatants of Con A-activated mouse spleen cells and is required for the differentiation of CTL precursors into active CTLs.

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Author information

Author notes

    • David H. Raulet
    •  & Michael J. Bevan

    Present addresses: Department of Pathology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104, USA (D.H.R.); Department of Immunology, Scripps Clinic and Research Foundation, La Jolla, California 92037, USA (M.J.B.).

Affiliations

  1. Center for Cancer Research and Department of Biology, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139, USA

    • David H. Raulet
    •  & Michael J. Bevan

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https://doi.org/10.1038/296754a0

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