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To Ki or not to Ki: Re-evaluating the use and potentials of Ki-67 for T cell analysis

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journal contribution
posted on 05.05.2021, 13:37 by Francesca Di Rosa, Andrea Cossarizza, Adrian C Hayday
This study discusses substantive advances in T cell proliferation analysis, with the aim to provoke a re-evaluation of the generally-held view that Ki-67 is a reliable proliferation marker per se, and to offer a more sensitive and effective method for T cell cycle analysis, with informative examples in mouse and human settings. We summarize recent experimental work from our labs showing that, by Ki-67/DNA dual staining and refined flow cytometric methods, we were able to identify T cells in the S-G /M phases of the cell-cycle in the peripheral blood (collectively termed “T Double S” for T cells in S-phase in Sanguine: in short “T ” cells). Without our refinement, such cells may be excluded from conventional lymphocyte analyses. Specifically, we analyzed clonal expansion of antigen-specific CD8 T cells in vaccinated mice, and demonstrated the potential of T cells to reflect immune dynamics in human blood samples from healthy donors, and patients with type 1 diabetes, infectious mononucleosis, and COVID-19. The Ki-67/DNA dual staining, or T assay, provides a reliable approach by which human peripheral blood can be used to reflect the dynamics of human lymphocytes, rather than providing mere steady-state phenotypic snapshots. The method does not require highly sophisticated “-omics” capabilities, so it should be widely-applicable to health care in diverse settings. Furthermore, our results argue that the T assay can provide a window on immune dynamics in extra-lymphoid tissues, a long-sought potential of peripheral blood monitoring, for example in relation to organ-specific autoimmune diseases and infections, and cancer immunotherapy. 2 DS DS DS DS


Crick (Grant ID: 10093, Grant title: Hayday FC001093)


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