Tell me about the CD4+CD8+ T cell clones I have derived

David N. Levy levy at
Sun Nov 16 17:25:19 EST 1997

I have been deriving human T cell clones against synthetic peptides by
stimulating naive PBMC and following standard methodology such as
limiting dilution cloning, etc.  I have generated several CD4+ lines,
which is what I am after, but some clones have a CD4+CD8+/- phenotype,
and I don't understand what's going on here.  

By FACS analysis these cells are 100% CD4 positive and their CD8
expression ranges from zero to high in a near-continuum.  There might
be two clonal populations here, one CD4 SP and one CD4+CD8+ DP, but I
dont think so.  Nevertheless, is there a significance to generating a
CD4+CD8+ DP cell line from naive peripheral blood, in that I associate
DP cells with immature thymocytes and not with mature peripheral T

Also, if the CD8+ heterogeneity represents differential CD8 expression
by a clonal population (and not two different T cell clones in one
well), what does this represent?

David N. Levy
University of Alabama at Birmingham
Birmingham, AL 35294-0007

levy at

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