Open Access
Clonal expansion of HTLV-1 infected cells depends on the CD4 versus CD8 phenotype
Linda Zane1,David Sibon1,Franck Mortreux1,Eric Wattel1
Oncovirology and Biotherapy, FRE CNRS 3011 Lyon I University, Leon Berard Center, Lyon France
DOI: 10.2741/3502 Volume 14 Issue 10, pp.3935-3941
Published: 01 January 2009

As other deltaretroviruses HTLV-1 replication in vivo includes a first short step of reverse transcription that is followed by the persistent clonal expansion of infected cells. In vivo these cells include the CD4+ and CD8+ lymphocytes yet the virus induces adult T cell leukemia/lymphoma (ATLL) that is regularly of the CD4+ phenotype. Cloned infected cells from individuals without malignancy possess a dramatic increase in spontaneous proliferation, which predominated with CD8+ lymphocytes and depends on the amount of tax mRNA. In fact, the clonal expansion of HTLV-1 positive CD8+ and CD4+ lymphocytes relies on two distinct mechanisms: infection prevented cell death in the former whereas recruiting the latter into the cell cycle. Furthermore infected tax-expressing CD4+ lymphocytes cumulate cellular defects characteristic of genetic instability. Therefore, HTLV-1 infection establishes a preleukemic phenotype that is restricted to CD4+ infected clones. Investigating the mechanisms underlying apoptosis, cell cycling and DNA repair in cloned cells from naturally infected individuals will permit to deciphering the molecular pathogenesis of HTLV-1 infection.

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Linda Zane, David Sibon, Franck Mortreux, Eric Wattel. Clonal expansion of HTLV-1 infected cells depends on the CD4 versus CD8 phenotype. Frontiers in Bioscience-Landmark. 2009. 14(10); 3935-3941.