The neoplastically transformed (CD30hi) Marek's disease lymphoma cell phenotype most closely resembles T-regulatory cells

L. A. Shack, J. J. Buza, S. C. Burgess

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

33 Scopus citations


Introduction: Marek's disease (MD), a herpesvirus-induced lymphoma of chickens is a unique natural model of CD30-overexpressing (CD30hi) lymphoma. We have previously proposed that the CD30hi neoplastically transformed CD4+ T cells in MD lymphomas have a phenotype antagonistic to cell mediated immunity. Here were test the hypothesis that the CD30hi neoplastically transformed MD lymphoma cells have a phenotype more closely resembling T-helper (Th)-2 or regulatory T (T-reg) cells. Materials and methods: We separated ex vivo-derived CD30hi, from the CD30lo/- (non-transformed), MD lymphoma cells and then quantified the relative amounts of mRNA and proteins for cytokines and other genes that define CD4+ Th-1, Th-2 or T-reg phenotypes. Results and discussion: Gene Ontology-based modeling of our data shows that the CD30hi MD lymphoma cells having a phenotype more similar to T-reg. Sequences that could be bound by the MD virus putative oncoprotein Meq in each of these genes' promoters suggests that the MD herpesvirus may play a direct role in maintaining this T-reg-like phenotype.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1253-1262
Number of pages10
JournalCancer Immunology, Immunotherapy
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1 2008
Externally publishedYes



  • Animal model
  • Gene Ontology
  • Herpesvirus
  • Regulatory T cell
  • Systems biology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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