Adenosine inhibition of lymphocyte-mediated cytolysis: possible role of cyclic adenosine monophosphate

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Science  14 Mar 1975:
Vol. 187, Issue 4180, pp. 957-959
DOI: 10.1126/science.167434


The in vitro destruction of tumor cells by specifically sensitized mouse lymphocytes was inhibited by adenosine; this inhibition was markedly potentiated by the presence of an inhibitor of adenosine deaminase. The inhibition of cytolysis by adenosine was accompanied by a rapid elevation in lymphocytic adenosine 3',5'-monophosphate (cyclic AMP) concentrations. Both the inhibition of cytolysis and the elevation of cyclic AMP were reversed by prolonged incubation of the lymphocytes in the presence of adenosine or, more rapidly, by removal of the adenosine. Low concentrations of adenosine also caused an elevation of cyclic AMP in human lymphocytes, and this effect of adenosine may contribute to the lack of immune response associated with adenosine deaminase deficiency.

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