Clonal populations of CD4+ and CD8+ T cells in patients with multiple myeloma and paraproteinemia.
Moss P., Gillespie G., Frodsham P., Bell J., Reyburn H.
Patients with paraproteinemia have abnormalities in their T-cell subsets including inversion of the CD4:CD8 ratio and increased expression of activation markers. Recently, distortions in T-cell receptor (TCR) TCRAV and TCRBV gene segment expression have been reported, although the significance of these observations is unclear given the finding of clonal populations of CD8+ T cells in healthy elderly individuals. We have used an extensive range of TCR V-region-specific monoclonal antibodies to assess TCRAV and TCRBV expression in patients with myeloma and paraproteinemia. TCR sequence analysis was used to assess the clonality of expansions and 3-color fluorescence-activated cell sorting analysis determined the phenotype of the expanded populations. The patients show novel oligoclonal expansions within the CD4+ subset and show an increased frequency of CD8+ expansions. Oligoclonal CD4+ T cells belong to the rare CD4+CD28- T-cell subset, a phenotype associated with granular morphology. CD45RA and CD11b are expressed on many of the CD8 T-cell expansions. Comparison of T-cell receptor sequences from two T-cell clones in one patient suggests a possible role for a common peptide antigen in the generation of the expansions. Further work is needed to identify the relevance of such T cells to the B-cell proliferation.