T cell homing to sites of injury and inflammation is a critical step for adaptive immune responses. While much has been learned regarding T cell homing to lymphoid tissues, few studies have directly observed trafficking events during an effector response. In this study, we developed a model that uses intravital fluorescence videomicroscopy to determine the molecules critical to T cell rolling within skin allograft microvasculature during the effector phase of the rejection response. Additional studies were performed to quantify T cell infiltrates as rejection progressed. We found that P-selectin and E-selectin expressed on postcapillary venules play overlapping roles in the recruitment of activated T cells in a SCID reconstitution model of skin graft rejection and are important in T cell accumulation at the graft site. Surprisingly, we also found that naive T cells are recruited and accumulate via constitutive T cell L-selectin and upregulated L-selectin ligands on rejecting allograft vasculature. These data indicated that a specific retinue of molecules is upregulated during the rejection response, and they suggest potential future therapeutic targets.
Thomas R. Jones, Nozomu Shirasugi, Andrew B. Adams, Thomas C. Pearson, Christian P. Larsen