Although CD8-positive, class I-restricted CTL play a critical role in viral clearance and immunopathology in many model systems, they have not been shown to directly kill their target cells in vivo at the single cell level. Using a hepatitis B surface Ag transgenic mouse model of class I-restricted, CTL-mediated liver disease, we now demonstrate that CD8-positive, L(d)- restricted hepatitis B surface Ag-specific CTL bind and kill their target cells in vivo by triggering them to undergo degenerative cytologic changes compatible with apoptosis. Unexpectedly, the data also indicate that the pathologic consequences of this direct, Ag-specific CTL effect are much less severe than the cytodestructive, Ag-nonspecific inflammatory response that they induce when they are activated by Ag recognition.
|Number of pages||9|
|Journal||Journal of Immunology|
|State||Published - Apr 1 1994|