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Development of CD8+ effector T cells is differentially regulated by IL-18 and IL-12

, : Development of CD8+ effector T cells is differentially regulated by IL-18 and IL-12. Journal of Immunology 162(6): 3202-3211

We investigated the effects of IL-18 on the development of CD8+ effector T cells in DBA/2 anti-BDF1 whole spleen cell MLC and compared the results with those of IL-12. Addition of IL-18 to the MLC resulted in a twofold increase in CD8/CD4 ratios compared with the control cultures when cells were expanded in IL-2-containing medium following MLC. Purified CD8+ T cells recovered from the IL-18-stimulated MLC produced 20- to 30-fold more IFN-gamma after secondary stimulation with C57BL/6 spleen cells or anti-CD3 mAb, and exhibited strong allospecific CTL activity. Neither IL-18 nor IL-18-supplemented culture supernatants from DBA/2 anti-BDF1 MLC induced type I CD8+ effector T cells when purified CD8+ T cells were used as responder cells in primary MLC. Furthermore, CD4+ T cell depletion from the responder cells abrogated the IL-18-induced increase in secondary IFN-gamma production by CD8+ T cells, suggesting that IL-18-induced type I effector CD8+ T cell development was CD4+ T cell dependent. In marked contrast, adding IL-12 to primary MLC decreased CD8/CD4 ratios by 50% and suppressed secondary IFN-gamma production and CTL activity by CD8+ T cells regardless of concentration, whereas Th1 development was promoted by IL-12. Moreover, both IL-12 and IL-18 efficiently induced type I CD8+ effector T cells in C57BL/6 anti-BDF1 MLC. These findings show that IL-18 plays an important role in the generation of type I CD8+ effector T cells, and further suggest that functional maturation of CD8+ T cells is differentially regulated by IL-18 and IL-12.


PMID: 10092771

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