In order to investigate whether only T cells are involved in a cell-mediated cytotoxic system in vitro, we tested the cytotoxicity of immune killing cell populations as deprived as possible of B cells. Educated thymus cells, immune spleen cells purified by filtration through a column of beads coated with antimouse Ig antiserum, and finally educated thymus cells further purified by filtration through such a column fully retained their specific cytotoxic activity. This very strongly suggests that only T cells are involved in the killing of target cells by allogeneic immune cells in vitro, in this system.
Receptor-bearing cells involved in killing in the present system are thus very probably T cells. This point was further strengthened by the demonstration of specific adsorption, on the relevant monolayers, of each of the three above mentioned killing cell populations.