Intracellular Staining by Flow Cytometry
|Detection of CTLA‑4 in Human PBMCs by Flow Cytometry. Human peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) either (A) untreated or (B) treated with 5 ug/mL PHA for 2 days were stained with Mouse Anti-Human CTLA‑4 Monoclonal Antibody (Catalog # MAB3251) followed by Allophycocyanin-conjugated Anti-Mouse IgG Secondary Antibody (Catalog # F0101B) and Mouse Anti-Human CD3 epsilon PE‑conjugated Monoclonal Antibody (Catalog # FAB100P). Quadrant markers were set based on control antibody staining (Catalog # MAB002). To facilitate intracellular staining, cells were fixed with Flow Cytometry Fixation Buffer (Catalog # FC004) and permeabilized with Flow Cytometry Permeabilization/Wash Buffer I (Catalog # FC005). View our protocol for Staining Intracellular Molecules.|
CTLA-4 (cytotoxic T-lymphocyte associated protein‑4, designated CD152), is a type I transmembrane T cell inhibitory molecule that is a member of the Ig superfamily (1, 2). Human or mouse CTLA-4 cDNA encodes 223 amino acids (aa) including a 35 aa signal sequence, a 126 aa extracellular domain (ECD) with one Ig-like V-type domain, a 21 aa transmembrane (TM) sequence, and a 41 aa cytoplasmic sequence. It is found as a covalent homodimer of 41-43 kDa (2) Within the ECD, human CTLA-4 shares 68%, 71% and 83‑86% aa sequence identity with mouse, rat and porcine/bovine/rabbit/feline/canine CTLA-4, respectively. A 174 aa form that lacks TM and cytoplasmic sequences (sCTLA-4) is possibly secreted (3-5). Isoforms of 56-79 aa that mainly contain parts of the cytoplasmic domain are reported. In mouse, an isoform lacking the Ig-like domain has ligand-independent inhibitory activity and is termed liCTLA-4 (6). CD28, which is structurally related to CTLA-4, is constitutively expressed on naïve T cells and promotes T cell activation when engaged by B7-2 on antigen-presenting cells (APC) within the immunological synapse (IS) (1, 7, 8). In contrast, CTLA-4 is recruited from intracellular vesicles to the IS beginning 1-2 days after T cell activation (2, 7, 8). It forms a linear lattice with B7-1 on APC, inducing negative regulatory signals and ending T cell activation (9). Abatacept, a therapeutic human CTLA-4-Ig fusion protein (trade name Orencia), competes with CD28 for B7-1 and B7-2 binding and has been used to antagonize T cell activation in autoimmune conditions and to enhance transplant survival (10). Mice deleted for CTLA-4 show no abnormalities until after birth, but then develop lethal autoimmune reactions due to continued T cell activation and poor control by regulatory T cells, which constitutively express CTLA-4 in wild-type mice and humans (11-13).