Damselfish with neurofibromatosis exhibit cytotoxicity towards retrovirus infected cells

E. Churchill McKinney, Michael C. Schmale

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Lymphocytes from tumor-bearing damselfish are cytotoxic towards target cell lines derived from damselfish neurofibromatesis. These cell lines contain at least one retrovirus which appears to be related to the etiology of the disease. The current studies were designed to characterize the effectors of this cytotoxic reaction. Data presented here show that cells separated using an antibody (5C6.10.4) directed towards non-specific cytotoxic cells of catfish sequesters all antitumor activity in the 5C6.10.4 negative population. Thus, damselfish 5C6.10.4 positive cells bind to tumor targets, but do not contribute to target cell death. In contrast, 5C6.10.4 positive cells are cytotoxic towards xenogeneic erythrocytes. Cytotoxicity of splenocytes from animals inoculated with virus purified from the 88-503 cell line suggested that prior exposure to the retrovirus enhanced reactivity, especially towards 88-503. In addition, cytotoxicity was significantly greater in tumor homogenate injected animals that resisted tumor development for more than 5 months as compared to those that developed tumors quickly. Lastly, cytotoxic responsiveness towards primary cultures of mock and virus infected autologous and allogeneic cells implies that the cytotoxiceffector is directed towards retrovirus infected cells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)287-298
Number of pages12
JournalDevelopmental and Comparative Immunology
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 1997


  • Cytotoxic cells
  • Damselfish
  • Damselfish neurofibromatosis
  • Natural killer cells
  • Retrovirus
  • Tumor immunity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental Biology
  • Immunology


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