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Antigen-specific helper T cells in the responses of DBA/2 mice to a syngeneic tumour, P815 Hancock, Elizabeth Jane


When injected with live P815 tumour cells, DBA/2 mice developed cytotoxic cells reactive to the tumour. In addition, T helper cells from tumour-bearing mice enhanced the iri vitro generation of cytotoxic cells from normal DBA/2 spleen cells. The helper cells had the following properties (1) expression of the Thy-1.2 antigen; (2) resistance to y-radiation; (3) specific enhancement of the cytotoxic response to P815; (4) detectability in P815-bearing mice at the peak of cytotoxic cell activity; (5) activity in the early phase of cytotoxic cell activation. In parallel to the development of helper cell activity, suppressor cells were generated which suppressed the cytotoxic response to P815. These suppressor cells were removed by pre-treating mice with low doses of cyclophosphamide. High doses of cyclophosphamide reduced the cytotoxic response to both P815 and C57B1/6 alloantigens. Cyclophosphamide treatment reduced the frequency of cytotoxic precursor cells directed against P815, and an antigen-reactive helper cell involved in interleukin 2 production. Both interleukin 2 and thymocytes from P815-primed mice, restored the cytotoxic response against P815, to normal levels. Twenty six percent of animals primed with tumour cells cleared a challenge dose of P815 faster than unprimed control mice. Of these, 88% survived longer than the control animals. Eighteen percent of the recipients of cells from tumour-primed mice, cleared a challenge dose of P815 faster than mice injected with normal cells. Of these 53% survived significantly longer than control groups given either normal cells or no cells at all. Cells from mice primed to PPD showed significantly enhanced proliferative responses to soluble and P815-bound PPD, when compared with unprimed animals. However, cells from only a few PPD-primed mice showed enhanced cytotoxicity against P815 tumour cells, and PPD-primed cells either did not alter, or suppressed, the cytotoxic response of normal DBA/2 spleen cells, when stimulated with PPD-coated P815.

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