Paediatric reference values for the peripheral T cell compartment.
SourceScandinavian Journal of Immunology, 75, 4, (2012), pp. 436-444
1 april 2012
Article / Letter to editor
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Paediatrics - OUD tm 2017
Scandinavian Journal of Immunology
SubjectIGMD 5: Health aging / healthy living; niet-RU-publicaties
Immunophenotyping of blood lymphocyte subpopulations is an important tool in the diagnosis of immunological and haematological diseases. Paediatric age-matched reference values have been determined for the major lymphocyte populations, but reliable reference values for the more recently described T lymphocyte subpopulations, like different types of memory T lymphocytes, recent thymic emigrants, regulatory T cells and CXCR5(+) helper T lymphocytes, are not sufficiently available yet. We determined reference values for the absolute and relative sizes of T lymphocyte subpopulations in healthy children using the lysed whole blood method, which is most often used in diagnostic procedures. When the absolute numbers of some or all T lymphocyte subpopulations fall outside these reference ranges, this may indicate disease. The reference values show the course of T lymphocyte development in healthy children. Absolute T lymphocyte numbers increase 1.4-fold during the first months of life, and after 9-15 months, they decrease threefold to adult values; this is mainly caused by the expansion of recent thymic emigrants and naive cells. Helper and cytotoxic T lymphocytes show the same pattern. Regulatory T cells increase in the first 5 months of life and then gradually decrease to adult values, although the absolute numbers remain small. The relative number of CXCR5(+) cells within the CD4(+) CD45RO(+) T lymphocytes increases during the first 6 months of life and then remains more or less stable around 20%.
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