Characterization of Avian γδ T-Cell Subsets after Salmonella enterica Serovar Typhimurium Infection of Chicks

Pieper, Jana GND; Methner, Ulrich GND; Berndt, Angela GND

Avian gammadelta T lymphocytes are frequently found in blood and organs and assumed to be crucial to the immune defense against Salmonella infections of chicks. To elucidate the so far unknown immunological features of subpopulations of avian gammadelta T cells in the course of infection, day-old chicks were infected orally with Salmonella Typhimurium. Until 11 days after infection, the occurrence as well as transcription of the CD8 antigen and immunologically relevant protein genes of CD8alpha(-) and CD8alpha(蘨) (CD8alphaalpha(); CD8alphabeta()) gammadelta cells were analyzed using flow cytometry and quantitative real-time reverse transcription (RT)-PCR in blood, spleen, thymus and cecum. After infection, an increased percentage of CD8alpha(蘨) gammadelta T lymphocytes was found in blood and spleen as well as with highest values and most rapidly in cecum. Within the CD8alpha(蘨) subset, a significant rise in the number of CD8alphaalpha() cells was accompanied by enhanced CD8alpha antigen expression and reduced gene transcription of the CD8beta chain. CD8alphaalpha() and CD8alphabeta() cells showed elevated transcription for Fas, FasL, IL-2Ralpha and IFNgamma. While highest mRNA fold-changes were observed in CD8alphabeta() cells, the mRNA expression rates of CD8alphabeta() cells have never significantly exceeded that of the CD8alphaalpha() cells. In conclusion, both CD8alpha(蘨) gammadelta T-cell subpopulations (CD8alphaalpha() and CD8alphabeta()) might be a potential source of IFNgamma in Salmonella-infected chicks. However, due to their prominent frequency in blood and organs after infection, the avian CD8alphaalpha() gammadelta T cell subset seems to be unique and of importance in the course of the Salmonella Typhimurium infection of very young chicks



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Pieper, Jana / Methner, Ulrich / Berndt, Angela: Characterization of Avian γδ T-Cell Subsets after Salmonella enterica Serovar Typhimurium Infection of Chicks. 2010.


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