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Epstein-Barr Virus Co-infection in Children Boosts Cytomegalovirus-induced Differentiation of Natural Killer Cells
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Molecular Biosciences, The Wenner-Gren Institute.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Molecular Biosciences, The Wenner-Gren Institute.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Molecular Biosciences, The Wenner-Gren Institute.
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(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

During childhood, infections with cytomegalovirus (CMV) and Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) can occur in close temporal proximity. Active as well as latent CMV infection is associated with enlarged subsets of differentiated NK- and cytotoxic T cells. How EBV infection may influence CMV-driven immune differentiation is not known. Here we found that EBV co-infection selectively influenced the NK-cell compartment of CMV-seropositive (CMV+) children. Co-infected children had significantly higher proportions of peripheral-blood NKG2C+ NK cells than CMV+EBV children. Ex vivo NK-cell degranulation after target cell stimulation and plasma IL-15 levels were significantly higher in CMV+ children. EBV co-infection related with the highest levels of plasma IL-15 and IL-12p70. Remarkably, in vitro EBV infection of peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) from EBVCMV+ children increased NKG2C+ NK-cell proportions. A similar tendency was seen in co-cultures of PBMC with EBV+ lymphoblastoid B-cell lines (LCL) and IL-15. Following K562 challenge, NKG2C+ NK cells excelled in regards to degranulation and production of IFN-g, regardless of previous co-culture with LCL. Taken together, our data suggest that herpesvirus interplay during childhood could contribute to an in vivo environment supporting differentiation and maintenance of distinct NK-cell populations. This viral imprint may affect subsequent immune responses through altered distributions of effector cells.

Keyword [en]
CMV, EBV, co-infection, NK cell, NKG2C
National Category
Immunology
Research subject
Immunology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-93007OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-93007DiVA: diva2:643713
Available from: 2013-08-28 Created: 2013-08-28 Last updated: 2013-08-30Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Immune maturation in early childhood and the influence of herpesvirus infections
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Immune maturation in early childhood and the influence of herpesvirus infections
2013 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The quality of immune responses develops from birth into adulthood and in the context of the host microbial environment. The aim of this work was to study immune maturation during childhood, and how this process can be affected by the common herpesviruses; Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) and cytomegalovirus (CMV).

In paper I we studied monocytes, an important cell type for immunity in the newborn. We showed that the neonatal monocyte subsets exist in similar frequencies as adult subsets, and have a potent capacity for pro-inflammatory cytokine production. In paper II, III and IV we studied the effects of EBV and CMV infections on immune cell function in children. In paper II we found that monocyte-induced NK-cell production of IFN-γ, and plasma IFN-γ levels, were decreased in 2-year old EBV- and/or CMV-seropositive children and mostly so in co-infected children. In paper III we found that in 5-year old children, EBV and CMV co-infection was associated with the highest levels of differentiated NKG2C+ NK cells. CMV+ children had higher plasma IFN-γ and IL-15 levels and higher NK-cell cytotoxic capacity. In vitro PBMC systems showed elevated frequencies of NKG2C+ NK cells in the presence of EBV-infected cells. In paper IV we showed that a child’s age and subsequent capacity for anti-viral cytokine production affects in vitro EBV infection in terms of B-cell proliferation and B-cell acquisition of memory phenotype. PBMC from CMV+ children had lower EBV-induced accumulation of switched memory B cells, which was connected to high prevalence of CD57+CD8+ T cells and IFN-γ production.

Taken together, this thesis work shows that monocyte subsets at birth can give potent functional responses and that latency with EBV and CMV has a significant effect on the differentiation process and functional capacity of anti-viral effector cells during childhood. This in turn could affect responses to related or unrelated infections or even to non-invasive antigens such as allergens.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Molecular Biosciences, The Wenner-Gren Institute, Stockholm University, 2013. 91 p.
Keyword
Immune differentiation, monocytes, NK cells, B cells, T cells, Epstein-Barr virus; EBV, cytomegalovirus; CMV, IFN-γ
National Category
Immunology
Research subject
Immunology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-93034 (URN)978-91-7447-745-0 (ISBN)
Public defence
2013-10-11, De Geersalen, Geovetenskapens hus, Svante Arrhenius väg 14, Stockholm, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

At the time of the doctoral defense, the following papers were unpublished and had a status as follows: Paper 3: Manuscript. Paper 4: Manuscript.

Available from: 2013-09-19 Created: 2013-08-29 Last updated: 2013-09-17Bibliographically approved

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