Reduced incidence of marek’s disease gross lymphomas in t-cell-depleted chickens

J. M. Sharma, K. Nazerian, R. L. Witter

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17 Scopus citations


Chickens of line 7, highly susceptible to Marek’s disease (MD), were depleted of T-cells by neonatal thymectomy, total-body g-irradiation, and multiple injections with antithymocyte serum. In two replicate experiments, significantly fewer gross lymphomas were present in T-cell-depleted chickens than in intact or in T-cell-depleted, reconstituted hatchmates; these findings provided evidence that T-cells may be the principal target for MD virus (MDV) transformation. T-cell depletion was not complete, and the presence of microscopic lesions in T-cell-depleted chickens was attributed to residual T-cells. Ten lymphomas from intact chickens and 2 lymphomas from a T-cell-depleted chicken were examined for cellular composition. All lymphomas consisted predominantly of T-cells. The results of this and other published studies indicated that T-cells may have a dual role in MD: They may serve as a target for lymphoma formation by MDV and also may participate in immune surveillance against the disease in resistant chickens.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)689-692
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of the National Cancer Institute
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1977

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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