Co-stimulation of T cells results in distinct IL-10 and TNF-alpha cytokine profiles dependent on binding to ICAM-1, ICAM-2 or ICAM-3

D A Bleijs, R de Waal-Malefyt, C G Figdor, Y van Kooyk

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42 Citations (Scopus)


The LFA-1 adhesion molecule is involved in cell adhesion events of leukocytes through binding to ICAM-1, ICAM-2 and ICAM-3. Whether binding to either of these ligands similarly affects co-stimulation of T cells and cytokine secretion is unknown. We demonstrated that LFA-1 co-stimulation under suboptimal concentrations of anti-CD3 monoclonal antibodies resulted in high, intermediate and weak proliferation of T cells on ICAM-1, -2, and -3, respectively, which correlates with the distinct affinities of LFA-1 for these ligands. Furthermore, we investigated whether binding to ICAM-1, -2 or -3 induced different cytokine profiles, thus regulating T helper cell function. Granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor and IFN-gamma were secreted in high amounts, whereas IL-2, IL-4 and IL-5 could not be detected. Interestingly, we observed that LFA-1/ICAM-1 co-stimulation of T cells resulted in high production of the Th2 cytokine IL-10 compared to ICAM-2 or ICAM-3 co-stimulation. In contrast, ICAM-2 and ICAM-3 induced a much stronger secretion of the Th1 cytokine TNF-alpha compared to LFA-1/ICAM-1 induced co-stimulation, despite the lower proliferation rate. These results demonstrate that besides facilitating cell adhesion, LFA-1 serves as a potent co-stimulatory molecule by inducing different cytokine patterns depending on the ligand bound.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2248-58
Number of pages11
JournalEuropean journal of immunology
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1999


  • Antigens, CD/metabolism
  • Antigens, Differentiation
  • Cell Adhesion
  • Cell Adhesion Molecules/metabolism
  • Humans
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Intercellular Adhesion Molecule-1/metabolism
  • Interleukin-10/metabolism
  • Ligands
  • Lymphocyte Activation
  • Lymphocyte Function-Associated Antigen-1/metabolism
  • T-Lymphocytes/cytology
  • Th2 Cells/cytology
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha/metabolism

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