CD8+ cytotoxic lymphocyte responses against cytomegalovirus after liver transplantation: correlation with time from transplant to receipt of tacrolimus.
Hassan-Walker AF., Vargas Cuero AL., Mattes FM., Klenerman P., Lechner F., Burroughs AK., Griffiths PD., Phillips RE., Emery VC.
The effects of the immunocompromised state after liver transplantation on the frequency of cytomegalovirus-specific cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTL) were investigated in 93 patients by using HLA class I tetrameric complexes corresponding to HLA-A*0201, HLA-B*0702, HLA-B*0801, and HLA-B*3501 refolded with peptides from the ppUL83 matrix protein. ppUL83 CTL frequencies were suppressed during the first 6 months after transplantation. Patients with >1 HLA-restricted response detected had high correlation among ppUL83 CD8(+) CTL frequencies restricted by different HLA haplotypes (Spearman's rho=.67; P<.0001). There was an inverse correlation among levels of the calcineurin inhibitor, tacrolimus, and ppUL83 CD8(+) CTL frequencies (r=-.31; P=.005), which is consistent with the presence of a large proportion (70%) of activated (CD38(+)) ppUL83 CD8(+) CTL within the population of HLA class I tetramer-positive cells.