Expression of macrophage markers by a population of T cells obtained from synovial fluid of a subgroup of patients with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis

Zhila Khalkhali-Ellis, Stanford T. Roodman, Alan P. Knutsen, Kathleen R. Mueller, Bela Chauhan, Terry L. Moore, Mary J.C. Hendrix*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

5 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective. To characterize distinctive lymphoid cell populations in the synovial fluid (SF) of patients with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis (JRA) that have the specific ability to display monocytic markers when cultured in vitro. Methods. Mononuclear cells obtained from SF of patients with JRA and depleted of adherent macrophages were cultured in vitro in RPMI 1640 medium supplemented with only fetal calf serum (FCS). Phenotypic evaluation of these cells was by flow cytometry and immunohistochemical analysis was by specific fluorochrome labeled antibodies. Results. T cells from a JRA subgroup displayed some typical macrophage attributes, i.e., abundant cytoplasm, adherence to plastic, and phagocytosis of latex beads when cultured in vitro. These cells have the ability to survive in culture for several weeks in RPMI 1640 medium containing only 10% FCS. The macrophage-like T cells rosetted with sheep red blood cells and proliferated when stimulated with phytohemagglutinin or anti-CD3, indicating functional T cell responses. Conclusion. Our data indicate that a population of T cells obtained from the SF of a subgroup of patients with JRA exhibited characteristics of macrophages, yet retained their CD3 and T cell receptor expression. Whether this promiscuous behavior is caused by malignant transformation of lymphoid precursor cells or is induced by the concerted effect of a myriad of cytokines and growth factors present in the SF remains unknown. The presence of these cells in the SF of 2 patients with JRA with different onset types raises the question of their function and significance in an autoimmune disorder such as JRA.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)352-360
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Rheumatology
Volume25
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1998

Keywords

  • Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis
  • Macrophage
  • Synovial fluid
  • T cell

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rheumatology
  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology

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    Khalkhali-Ellis, Z., Roodman, S. T., Knutsen, A. P., Mueller, K. R., Chauhan, B., Moore, T. L., & Hendrix, M. J. C. (1998). Expression of macrophage markers by a population of T cells obtained from synovial fluid of a subgroup of patients with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis. Journal of Rheumatology, 25(2), 352-360.