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Mapping the extent of heterogeneity of human CCR5+ CD4+ T cells in peripheral blood and lymph nodes


BACKGROUND: CD4 T cells that express the chemokine receptor, CCR5, are the most important target of HIV-1 infection, but their functions, phenotypes and anatomical locations are poorly understood. We aimed to use multiparameter flow cytometry to better define the full breadth of these cells. METHODS: High-parameter fluorescence flow and mass cytometry were optimized to analyse subsets of CCR5 memory CD4 T cells, including CD25CD127 Tregs, CXCR3CCR6- Th1-like, CCR6CD161CXCR3- Th17-like, integrins alpha4ss7 gut-homing, CCR4 skin-homing, CD62L lymph node-homing, CD38HLA-DR activated cells, and CD27-CD28- cytotoxic T lymphocytes, in a total of 22 samples of peripheral blood, ultrasound-guided fine needle biopsies of lymph nodes and excised tonsils. CCR5 antigen-specific CD4 T cells were studied using the OX40 flow-based assay. RESULTS: 10-20% of CCR5 memory CD4 T cells were Tregs, 10-30% were gut-homing, 10-30% were skin-homing, 20-40% were lymph node-homing, 20-50% were Th1-like and 20-40% were Th17-like cells. Up to 30% were cytotoxic T lymphocytes in CMV-seropositive donors, including cells that were either CCR5Granzyme K or CCR5Granzyme B. When all possible phenotypes were exhaustively analysed, more than 150 different functional and trafficking subsets of CCR5 CD4 T cells were seen. Moreover, a small population of resident CD69Granzyme KCCR5 CD4 T cells was found in lymphoid tissues. CMV- and Mycobacterium tuberculosis-specific CD4 T cells were predominantly CCR5. CONCLUSION: These results reveal for the first time the prodigious heterogeneity of function and trafficking of CCR5 CD4 T cells in blood and in lymphoid tissue, with significant implications for rational approaches to prophylaxis for HIV-1 infection and for purging of the HIV-1 reservoir in those participants already infected.

Type Journal
ISBN 1473-5571 (Electronic) 0269-9370 (Linking)
Authors Zaunders, J.; Munier, C. M. L.; McGuire, H. M.; Law, H.; Howe, A.; Xu, Y.; de St Groth, B. F.; Schofield, P.; Christ, D.; Milner, B.; Obeid, S.; Dyer, W. B.; Saksena, N. K.; Kelleher, A. D.
Responsible Garvan Author Prof Daniel Christ
Publisher Name AIDS
Published Date 2020-05-01
Published Volume 34
Published Issue 6
Published Pages 833-848
Status Published in-print
DOI 10.1097/QAD.0000000000002503
URL link to publisher's version