CD45 splice isoforms depending on maturation stage.

Naive mature T cells express CD45R epitopes, and activation shifts isoform usage towards the CD450 form. Furthermore, functionally distinct T cell subsets have characteristic patterns of CD45 isoforms. CD8+ cytolytic T cells express higher levels of CD45RA, and distinct CD45R staining patterns on T helper subsets are observed. Carbohydrate specific monoclonals also reveal distinct compartmental and activation state epitopes on T cell CD45. Therefore, T cell CD45 isoform usage is dynamic and likely reflects a complex regulatory program.

B cells normally express the high molecular weight CD45a isoform (also termed B220). However, cytokine treatment and viral transformation induce a change in staining pattern of the CD45R antibodies, including an increase in the expression of lower molecular weight isoforms. B cells also express carbohydrate epitopes on CD45 distinct from other cell lineages.

Monocytes express primarily the CD450 isoform. Similar to the effects in T and B lineages, activation events induce the appearance of CD45RA epitopes, suggesting the expression of higher molecular weight isoforms.

Thus, the polypeptide and carbohydrate composition of the CD45 extracellular domain is highly regulated in a cell type-specific, developmentally regulated and activation state-dependent manner.

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