- Transformation Potential of NPM-ALK, p21SNFT and Tax for Mature T Lymphocytes (2010)
- To date it is not clear at which stage of differentiation mature T cell leukaemia/lymphoma is initiated. Previous studies in our group showed that mature T cells are relatively resistant to transformation. We wanted to further investigate the transformation potential of NPM-ALK, p21SNFT and the viral oncoprotein Tax on mature T cells. First, we analyzed the effects on T cell growth in vitro after transducing human T cell lines with gammaretroviral vectors encoding these genes. No growth or proliferation promoting effect of all three genes was observed. In the second part of the project, we transduced murine, mature T cells and/or haematopoietic stem cells (HPCs/HSCs) and transplanted these cells into Rag-1 deficient recipients. All mice transplanted with NPM-ALK transduced monoclonal mature T cells (OT-1) developed leukaemia/lymphoma. In contrast, only few NPM-ALK transduced polyclonal T cell and HPC/HSC transplanted mice developed leukaemia/lymphoma. From the p21SNFT group, only two mice transplanted with transduced OT-1 T cells developed leukaemia/lymphoma, which showed high eGFP and interestingly CD19 expression. No malignancies were observed in Tax transplanted animals so far. Furthermore, the recipients do not show any eGFP marking in the periphery. In conclusion, our results show that compared to polyclonal T cells, monoclonal T cells are transformable after gammaretroviral transfer of NPM-ALK and p21SNFT.