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Mechanisms of B cell activation in patients with acquired immunodeficiency syndrome and related disorders. Contribution of antibody-producing B cells, of Epstein-Barr virus-infected B cells, and of immunoglobulin production induced by human T cell lymphotropic virus, type III/lymphadenopathy-associated virus



Mechanisms of B cell activation in patients with acquired immunodeficiency syndrome and related disorders. Contribution of antibody-producing B cells, of Epstein-Barr virus-infected B cells, and of immunoglobulin production induced by human T cell lymphotropic virus, type III/lymphadenopathy-associated virus



Journal of Clinical Investigation 78(2): 439-447



Patients with acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) and AIDS-related complex (ARC) have hyperimmunoglobulinemia and increased numbers of circulating immunoglobulin-secreting cells. In this paper, we studied the basis for this B cell hyperactivity. Limiting dilution studies of B cells from seven patients with ARC and four with AIDS revealed that some B cells spontaneously produced antibodies to human T cell lymphotropic virus, type III/lymphadenopathy-associated virus (HTLV-III/LAV) (39:10(6) and 7:10(6) B cells, respectively), suggesting that chronic antigenic stimulation by HTLV-III/LAV was one contributing factor. The patients also had an increased number of spontaneously outgrowing B cells than did normals (6:10(6) vs. less than 2:10(6) B cells), suggesting that they had an increased number of Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)-infected B cells. However, fewer B cells from patients were immortalized by exogenously added EBV than were B cells from normals. In additional studies, HTLV-III/LAV induced immunoglobulin secretion (mean 2,860 ng/ml) by peripheral blood mononuclear cells from normals; this HTLV-III/LAV-induced immunoglobulin secretion required the presence of both B and T cells. Thus, antigenic stimulation by HTLV-III/LAV, increased numbers of EBV-infected B cells, and HTLV-III/LAV-induced T cell-dependent B cell activation all contribute to the B cell hyperactivity in patients with HTLV-III/LAV disease.

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PMID: 3016028


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