Further clonal expansion of T cells upon rechallenge of superantigen staphylococcal enterotoxin A

Yoshiyasu Aoki, Yasunobu Yoshikai

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7 Citations (Scopus)


Superantigens are known to induce clonal anergy and/or deletion in reactive T cells peripherally. This study was undertaken to investigate the T-cell status early after exposure to staphylococcal enterotoxin A (SEA) in vivo and in vitro. At the peak of clonal expansion following the administration of 5 μg SEA (i.e., 2 days after the injection), C57BL/6 mice were rechallenged with the same dose of SEA in vivo. The secondary stimulation augmented clonal expansion of the T cells bearing Vβ3 and Vβ11 in both CD4+ and CD8+ populations. In vitro restimulation of the spleen cells taken from the SEA-primed mice also induced further expansion of the Vβ3+ T cells during 2 days of culturing, whereas without restimulation, a marked reduction of Vβ3+ T cells occurred. The spleen cells from the SEA- primed mice were hyper-reactive to in vitro restimulation with SEA as measured by 3H.TdR uptake on day 1 of culturing, but augmented proliferation leveled off thereafter. By day 3, the values of 3H-TdR uptake were less than 20% of those of the controls in which spleen cells from native mice were stimulated with SEA in vitro. These results suggest that T cells exposed to SEA in vivo are still capable of proliferating upon SEA rechallenge, but subsequently, the proliferation starts to wane.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)337-343
Number of pages7
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1997
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Microbiology
  • Immunology
  • Virology


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