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By Frank J. (Editor) Dixon

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Excessive Suppressor-T-cell Activity In general, evidence for excessive suppressor-T-cell activity in patients with immunoglobulin deficiency states has been obtained utilizing coculture techniques. In this approach circulating mononuclear cells or T cells from a patient undergoing study are cocultured with circulating mononuclear cells from normal individuals or with normal B cells plus irradiated normal T cells in the presence of PWM or other polyclonal activators. The synthesis of inimunoglobulins by the two subjects in coculture is related to the sum of the contribution expected from these subjects determined from the immunoglobulin synthesis by the cell populations of these individuals when cultured alone.

WALDMANN AND SAMUEL BRODER ducer of polyclonal immunoglobulin synthesis that does not require the cooperative interaction of helper T cells or monocytes. Although EBV activation of B cells is independent of helper T cells, it should not be concluded that the B-cell response to EBV remains unaffected by the presence of T cells. It is clear that the EBV-induced B-cell activation is quite responsive to suppressor T-cell signals. For example, Thorley-Lawson and co-workers (1977) showed that the establishment of permanently growing B-cell lines from adults was significantly delayed when unseparated mononuclear cells were used rather than T-cell-depleted B cells.

As noted below, there was no inhibition of immunoglobulin synthesis at high T:B cell ratios when NWSM was the sole activator of immunoglobulin synthesis. However, the NWSM-stimulated immunoglobulin synthesis was reduced by 98% when PWM was added to these NWSM-stimulated cells cultured at T:B cell ratios of 9:l. Finally, when S6zary T leukemic cells, which frequently function as helper cells, were added to B cells, no suppression of immunoglobulin synthesis was observed at high T:B cell ratios. These observations taken together are consistent with the view that normal peripheral blood T cells include a distinct subpopulation of prosuppressor cells that can be activated by PWM to function as suppressors of immunoglobulin synthesis.

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