Interleukin 2 receptors are expressed by alveolar macrophages during pulmonary sarcoidosis and are inducible by lymphokine treatment of normal human lung macrophages, blood monocytes, and monocyte cell lines

W. W. Hancock, W. A. Muller, R. S. Cotran

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66 Scopus citations

Abstract

Expression of receptors for IL 2 was believed initially to be restricted to T cells after their activation by IL 1 and antigen. However, recently IL 2 receptors (IL 2R) were demonstrated on activated B cells by using an anti-IL 2R monoclonal antibody (anti-Tac). In this study, we examined the capacity of cultured human alveolar macrophages, blood monocytes, and myelomonocytic (HL-60) or monoblast (U937) cell lines to bind three different anti-IL 2R monoclonal antibodies before or after stimulation with the monocyte-activating agents IFN-γ, LPS, phorbol ester, or lymphokine-containing conditioned medium. For each of the four cell populations examined, resting unstimulated cells bound little or no anti-IL 2R antibody, as shown independently by quantitative cell binding assay and by immunoperoxidase labeling. By contrast, incubation with recombinant IFN-γ, conditioned medium, or to a lesser extent, native or recombinant IL 2 itself, resulted in a significant enhancement of anti-IL 2 receptor monoclonal antibody binding by all four populations, whereas LPS, PMA, or IL 1 had no effect. In addition, membrane binding of anti-Tac antibody, similar to that seen after stimulation of normal lung macrophages with IFN-γ, was detected by using macrophages obtained by bronchoalveolar lavage of five patients with active pulmonary sarcoidosis. These findings are consistent with the expression of a functional IL 2R on activated cells of the monocyte lineage, since i) anti-Tac binding to IFN-γ-treated HL-60 cells was inhibited by addition of excess IL-2; ii) specific binding of anti-IL 2 monoclonal antibodies was detected in the presence of exogenous IL 2; and iii) a 50 to 55 kD molecule was immunoprecipitated from both lung macrophages and T lymphoblasts by using anti-Tac antibody. We conclude that human mononuclear phagocytes can be induced by lymphokines to express IL 2R, and that such IL 2R+ macrophages can be detected in vivo during inflammation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)185-191
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Immunology
Volume138
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 1987

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology

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