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Characterization of Human CD8 T Cell Responses in Dengue Virus-Infected Patients from India.

Characterization of Human CD8 T Cell Responses in Dengue Virus-Infected Patients from India.
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Chandele A, Sewatanon J, Gunisetty S, Singla M, Onlamoon N, Akondy RS, Kissick HT, Nayak K, Reddy ES, Kalam H, Kumar D, Verma A, Panda H, Wang S, Angkasekwinai N, Pattanapanyasat K, Chokephaibulkit K, Medigeshi GR, Lodha R, Kabra S, Ahmed R, Murali-Krishna K,


Chandele A, Sewatanon J, Gunisetty S, Singla M, Onlamoon N, Akondy RS, Kissick HT, Nayak K, Reddy ES, Kalam H, Kumar D, Verma A, Panda H, Wang S, Angkasekwinai N, Pattanapanyasat K, Chokephaibulkit K, Medigeshi GR, Lodha R, Kabra S, Ahmed R, Murali-Krishna K, (click to view)

Chandele A, Sewatanon J, Gunisetty S, Singla M, Onlamoon N, Akondy RS, Kissick HT, Nayak K, Reddy ES, Kalam H, Kumar D, Verma A, Panda H, Wang S, Angkasekwinai N, Pattanapanyasat K, Chokephaibulkit K, Medigeshi GR, Lodha R, Kabra S, Ahmed R, Murali-Krishna K,

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Journal of virology 2016 11 2890(24) 11259-11278
Abstract

Epidemiological studies suggest that India has the largest number of dengue virus infection cases worldwide. However, there is minimal information about the immunological responses in these patients. CD8 T cells are important in dengue, because they have been implicated in both protection and immunopathology. Here, we provide a detailed analysis of HLA-DR(+) CD38(+) and HLA-DR(-) CD38(+) effector CD8 T cell subsets in dengue patients from India and Thailand. Both CD8 T cell subsets expanded and expressed markers indicative of antigen-driven proliferation, tissue homing, and cytotoxic effector functions, with the HLA-DR(+) CD38(+) subset being the most striking in these effector qualities. The breadth of the dengue-specific CD8 T cell response was diverse, with NS3-specific cells being the most dominant. Interestingly, only a small fraction of these activated effector CD8 T cells produced gamma interferon (IFN-γ) when stimulated with dengue virus peptide pools. Transcriptomics revealed downregulation of key molecules involved in T cell receptor (TCR) signaling. Consistent with this, the majority of these CD8 T cells remained IFN-γ unresponsive even after TCR-dependent polyclonal stimulation (anti-CD3 plus anti-CD28) but produced IFN-γ by TCR-independent polyclonal stimulation (phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate [PMA] plus ionomycin). Thus, the vast majority of these proliferating, highly differentiated effector CD8 T cells probably acquire TCR refractoriness at the time the patient is experiencing febrile illness that leads to IFN-γ unresponsiveness. Our studies open novel avenues for understanding the mechanisms that fine-tune the balance between CD8 T cell-mediated protective versus pathological effects in dengue.

IMPORTANCE
Dengue is becoming a global public health concern. Although CD8 T cells have been implicated both in protection and in the cytokine-mediated immunopathology of dengue, how the balance is maintained between these opposing functions remains unknown. We comprehensively characterized CD8 T cell subsets in dengue patients from India and Thailand and show that these cells expand massively and express phenotypes indicative of overwhelming antigenic stimulus and tissue homing/cytotoxic-effector functions but that a vast majority of them fail to produce IFN-γ in vitro Interestingly, the cells were fully capable of producing the cytokine when stimulated in a T cell receptor (TCR)-independent manner but failed to do so in TCR-dependent stimulation. These results, together with transcriptomics, revealed that the vast majority of these CD8 T cells from dengue patients become cytokine unresponsive due to TCR signaling insufficiencies. These observations open novel avenues for understanding the mechanisms that fine-tune the balance between CD8-mediated protective versus pathological effects.

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