Quantum dot semiconductor nanocrystals for immunophenotyping by polychromatic flow cytometry.
ABSTRACT Immune responses arise from a wide variety of cells expressing unique combinations of multiple cell-surface proteins. Detailed characterization is hampered, however, by limitations in available probes and instrumentation. Here, we use the unique spectral properties of semiconductor nanocrystals (quantum dots) to extend the capabilities of polychromatic flow cytometry to resolve 17 fluorescence emissions. We show the need for this power by analyzing, in detail, the phenotype of multiple antigen-specific T-cell populations, revealing variations within complex phenotypic patterns that would otherwise remain obscure. For example, T cells specific for distinct epitopes from one pathogen, and even those specific for the same epitope, can have markedly different phenotypes. The technology we describe, encompassing the detection of eight quantum dots in conjunction with conventional fluorophores, should expand the horizons of flow cytometry, as well as our ability to characterize the intricacies of both adaptive and innate cellular immune responses.
- SourceAvailable from: PubMed CentralFrontiers in Genetics 11/2014; 5:408.
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ABSTRACT: Despite progress toward understanding the correlates of protective T cell immunity in HIV infection, the optimal approach to Ag delivery by vaccination remains uncertain. We characterized two immunodominant CD8 T cell populations generated in response to immunization of BALB/c mice with a replication-deficient adenovirus serotype 5 vector expressing the HIV-derived Gag and Pol proteins at equivalent levels. The Gag-AI9/H-2K d epitope elicited high-avidity CD8 T cell populations with architecturally diverse clonotypic repertoires that displayed potent lytic activity in vivo. In contrast, the Pol-LI9/H-2D d epitope elicited motif-constrained CD8 T cell repertoires that displayed lower levels of physical avidity and lytic activity despite equivalent measures of overall clonality. Although low-dose vaccination enhanced the functional profiles of both epitope-specific CD8 T cell populations, greater polyfunctionality was apparent within the Pol-LI9/H-2D d specificity. Higher proportions of central memory-like cells were present after low-dose vaccination and at later time points. However, there were no noteworthy phenotypic differences between epitope-specific CD8 T cell populations across vaccine doses or time points. Collectively, these data indicate that the functional and phenotypic properties of vaccine-induced CD8 T cell populations are sensitive to dose manipulation, yet constrained by epitope specificity in a clonotype-dependent manner.The Journal of Immunology 12/2014; 193:5626-5636. · 5.36 Impact Factor