The waning of cell-mediated immunity during aging has been attributed primarily to defects in T lymphocyte properties and functions. We assessed the potential contribution of accessory dysfunction of monocytes from the elderly on responses of T cells to phytohemagglutinin (PHA) and to tetanus toxoid after in vivo boosting. Accessory function of monocytes from the elderly subjects for T lymphocyte responses to tetanus toxoid was comparable to the young. Expression of the cytokines interleukin-1 interleukin-6 and tumor necrosis factor, the cell adhesion molecules ICAM-1 and LFA-3 and the class II major histocompatibility molecule HLA-DR by monocytes from the elderly and young subjects was similar. T lymphocytes from the elderly responded poorly to PHA. Monocytes from the elderly had a decreased accessory function for PHA-stimulated T cells from young, third donors. Thus, although many accessory properties of monocytes from the elderly are normal, the monocyte and T lymphocyte defects in the elderly for mitogen may represent interactive factors in cell-mediated immunity during aging.
Elizabeth A. Rich, MD, Department of Medicine, University Hospitals of Cleveland, 2074 Abington Rd, Cleveland, OH 44106 (USA)
Received: October 1, 1992
Accepted: October 29, 1992
Published online: April 14, 2009
Number of Print Pages : 16
Gerontology (International Journal of Experimental, Clinical, Behavioural and Technological Gerontology)
Vol. 39, No. 2, Year 1993 (Cover Date: 1993)
Journal Editor: Wick G. (Innsbruck)
ISSN: 0304-324X (Print), eISSN: 1423-0003 (Online)
For additional information: http://www.karger.com/GER
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