A human CD4-CD8- T-cell receptor αβ+ T leukemic cell line undergoing phytohemagglutinin-induced apoptosis

Masayoshi Minegishi, Naoko Minegishi, Taka aki Yanagisawa, Shigeru Tsuchiya, Humi aki Tezuka, Mitsushi Kaji, Masataka Nakamura, Yasuhide Hayashi, Tasuke Konno

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8 Citations (Scopus)


A human CD4-CD8- αβ T-cell receptor (TCRαβ)+ T leukemic cell line, L-KAW, was established from the peripheral blood of a 6-year-old male patient with T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Its phenotype was found to be CD7+CD2+CD3+CD4-CD8-TCRαβ+. The cell line proved susceptible to killing by exposure to a mitogenic concentration of phytohemagglutinin (PHA) within several hours, with biochemical analyses demonstrating extensive degradation of DNA to oligonucleosomal bands characteristic of apoptosis. Chromatin condensation and cell shrinkage features of apoptotic cells could also be clearly identified under the electron microscope. The apoptosis-related Fas antigen was expressed on L-KAW cells and DNA fragmentation was induced by incubation with anti-Fas monoclonal antibody. The c-myc mRNA levels declined within 15 min to 3 h after the addition of PHA. These results suggest that L-KAW cells are specifically sensitive to induction of apoptosis in response to PHA without preactivation. They may, therefore, be considered an analog of activated T-cells and prove useful as a model system for characterizing biochemical and molecular mechanisms underlying the process of this type of cell death.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)433-442
Number of pages10
JournalLeukemia Research
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 1995 Jan 1


  • Apoptosis
  • Fas
  • PHA
  • activated T-cell
  • c-myc
  • cell line

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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