Ns

HBSS, Hanks' balanced salt solution; HRPO, horseradish peroxidase; GAT10, terpolymer of glutamic acid, alanine, and tyrosine; GLA5. terpolymer of glutamic acid, lysine and alanine; NS, not significant. Data from Kirkpatrick (1988). Reproduced by permission.

HBSS, Hanks' balanced salt solution; HRPO, horseradish peroxidase; GAT10, terpolymer of glutamic acid, alanine, and tyrosine; GLA5. terpolymer of glutamic acid, lysine and alanine; NS, not significant. Data from Kirkpatrick (1988). Reproduced by permission.

that were present in the transfer factor donors. Moreover, when blood lymphocytes from the recipients were examined for production of the lympho-kine, macrophage migration inhibitory factor (MIF) in vitro, it was found that, in contrast to pretreat-ment results, the cells responded to antigen activation by secreting this lymphokine.

As with the studies of delayed-type hypersensitivity, acquisition of MIF production by recipients was closely correlated with the delayed hypersensitivity responses of the transfer factor donors.

Subsequent studies in mice have shown that recipients' spleen cells respond to antigen activation by secreting interferon y (IFNy).

Transfer factors and lymphocyte transformation responses

In normal subjects, there is a close correlation between antigens that evoke positive delayed hypersensitivity responses and in vitro lymphocyte transformation responses. However, this correlation is not common in recipients of transfer factors. Even though the recipients acquire strong delayed-type hypersensitivity, they usually do not have cells in their peripheral blood that proliferate in vitro in the presence of the same antigen (Figure 1).

The observations may indicate that the primary targets of transfer factors are IFNy-producing effector T cells, and that transfer factors may not induce a population of antigen-specific memory T cells. This would be consistent with the observations that the best clinical results are seen in patients who are treated with repeated doses of the transfer factor.

Transfer factors and cytotoxic T cell activity

There have been fewer studies of cytotoxic 1 lymphocyte (CTL) activity in clinical or experimental situations. However, there are data in patients with malignant tumors and persistent viral infections that indicate that specific transfer factor therapy may activate CTLs.

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