PloS one

The effects of CAMPATH-1H on cell viability do not correlate to the CD52 density on the cell surface.

PMID 25050704


Graft versus host disease (GvHD) is one of the main complications after hematological stem cell transplantation (HSCT). CAMPATH-1H is used in the pre-transplant conditioning regimen to effectively reduce GvHD by targeting CD52 antigens on T cells resulting in their depletion. Information regarding CD52 expression and the effects of CAMPATH-1H on immune cells is scant and limited to peripheral blood (PB) T and B cells. To date, the effects of CAMPATH-1H on cord blood (CB) cells has not been studied. Here we aimed to analyze CD52 expression and the effects of CAMPATH-1H on fresh or frozen, resting or activated, PB mononuclear cells (PBMC) and CB mononuclear cells (CBMC). In resting state, CD52 expression was higher in CB than PB T cell subsets (653.66 ± 26.68 vs 453.32 ± 19.2) and B cells (622.2±20.65 vs 612.0 ± 9.101) except for natural killer (NK) cells where CD52 levels were higher in PB (421.0 ± 9.857) than CB (334.3 ± 9.559). In contrast, CD52 levels were comparable across all cell types after activation. CAMPATH-1H depleted resting cells more effectively than activated cells with approximately 80-95% of apoptosis observed with low levels of necrosis. There was no direct correlation between cell surface CD52 density and depleting effects of CAMPATH-1H. In addition, no difference in cell viability was noted when different concentrations of CAMPATH-1H were used. CD52 was not expressed on HSC but began to be expressed as the cells differentiate, implying that CAMPATH-1H could potentially affect HSC differentiation and proliferation. Our study provides insightful information, which contributes to the better understanding in the use of CAMPATH-1H as part of the conditioning regime in HSCT.