Prolongation of survival of rat cardiac allografts by T cell vaccination

Oz M. Shapira, Eitan Mor, Tamara Reshef, Reuven A. Pfeffermann, Irun R. Cohen*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Administration of attenuated, activated autoimmune T lymphocytes to syngeneic mice and rats has been shown to prevent or induce remission of experimental autoimmune diseases specific for the autoimmune T cells. The process has been termed "T cell vaccination." In a recent study, T cell vaccination was done using T cells sensitized to rat alloantigens. The procedure produced a significant reduction of the mixed lymphocyte reaction (MLR) against allogeneic cells. The reduction in MLR was not specific: Vaccination with T cells specific for stimulator cells of one allotype led to a reduced MLR stimulated by cells of another allotype. The present study was undertaken to examine whether T cell vaccination can induce tolerance to transplantation antigens in vivo. We used the model of heterotopic cardiac transplantation in rats. We now report that vaccinating rats with syngeneic, activated, alloantigen-primed T lymphocytes significantly prolonged survival of rat cardiac allografts. The effect of T cell vaccination was most evident when the T cells had been obtained from rats specifically sensitized against the donor rats: Brown-Norway (BN) allografts in control Wistar rats survived 8.5±0.4 d while BN allografts survived 29.2±7.1 d in Wistar rats that had been vaccinated with Wistar anti-BN cells. Vaccination of Wistar rats with Wistar anti-hooded T cells prolonged survival of BN heart allografts to a lesser but significant degree (13.0±1.1 d). Thus, T cell vaccination of recipients can prolong survival of allografts.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)388-390
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of Clinical Investigation
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1993
Externally publishedYes


  • Antiergotypic
  • Antiidiotypic
  • Autoimmune diseases
  • Cardiac transplantation
  • T cell vaccination


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