Lymphocyte activation induces or increases the expression of several surface structures, some of which are directly involved in cell growth such as receptors for IL-2 or transferrin. In order to identify new structures characteristic of activated lymphocytes, we developed a series of mAb against functionally defined human T cell clones. In the present study we report the isolation of a mAb termed BB18 recognizing, at the cell surface, a novel 150-kDa glycoprotein dimer whose expression on T lymphocytes increases readily after their activation with various stimuli including lectins. In contrast, in the presence of PMA, cell-surface expression of this 150-kDa structure is down-regulated even earlier than CD3 molecules. Biochemical studies as well as phenotypic analysis revealed that this structure is different from all previously identified molecules on the lymphocyte cell surface. Furthermore, functional studies showed that triggering this disulfide-linked dimer through BB18 epitope in the presence of submitogenic concentrations of PMA induced strong lymphocyte proliferation. This proliferative response require E+ cells and accessory cells, and this even after immobilization of BB18 mAb.
- Copyright © 1992 by American Association of Immunologists