Science in China Series C: Life Sciences

, Volume 43, Issue 2, pp 176–182 | Cite as

Differential recognition of MHC class I molecules of xeno-/allo-endothelial cells by human NK cells

  • Zhimin Feng
  • Xiaofeng Zhang
  • Hongfang Wang
  • Meifu Feng


Using human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVEC) and porcine aortic endothelial cells (PAEC) as target cells, human peripheral blood NK cells (PBNK) and NK92 cells as effector cells, the differential cytotoxicities of NK cells to allo- and xeno-endothelial cells were studied. The influence of MHC class I molecules on the cytotoxicity of human NK cells was assayed using acid treatment, and blockades of MHC class I antigens, CD94 and KIR (NKB1). The results indicated that the killing of PAEC by the two kinds of NK cells is higher than that of HUVEC. After acidtreatment, the cytotoxicity of the two kinds of NK cells to PAEC and HUVEC is significantly enhanced, but the magnitude of the enhancement is different. The enhancement of NK killing to acid treated HUVEC is much greater than that to PAEC. Blockade of CD94 mAb did not alter the NK cytotoxicity, while blockade of NKB1 mAb enhanced the cytotoxicity of PBNK to HUVEC and PAEC by 95% and 29% respectively. The results above suggested that the differential recognition of MHC I molecules of xeno-endothelial cells by human NK cells could be the major reason for higher NK cytotoxicity to PAEC. KIR might be the primary molecule that transduced inhibitory signals when endothelial cells were injured by NK cells.


human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVEC) porcine aortic endothelial cells (PAEC) peripheral blood natural killer cells (PBNK) NK92 acid treatment MHC class I molecules cytotoxicity 


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Copyright information

© Science in China Press 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Zhimin Feng
    • 1
  • Xiaofeng Zhang
    • 1
  • Hongfang Wang
    • 1
  • Meifu Feng
    • 1
  1. 1.State Key Lab of Biomembrane and Membrane Biotechnology, Institute of ZoologyChinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina

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