Human natural killer (NK) and killer (K) cells were directly enumerated using a monoclonal antibody (HNK-1) and an immunofluorescence assay. The frequency of cells bearing surface HNK-1 antigen was very low in the newborn (less than 1.0%) and increased progressively through childhood and into adult life. This was correlated with an age-related increase in functional NK and K cell activities. Males had a slightly higher proportion of HNK-1+ cells than females. In addition to HNK-1 expression on the surface membrane, a prominent cytoplasmic expression of HNK-1 antigen was found in some but not all surface HNK-1+ cells. The cytoplasmic accumulation of HNK-1 molecules appeared to occur in more mature cells of this lineage.
Postnatal expansion of the natural killer and keller cell population in humans identified by the monoclonal HNK-1 antibody.
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T Abo, M D Cooper, C M Balch; Postnatal expansion of the natural killer and keller cell population in humans identified by the monoclonal HNK-1 antibody.. J Exp Med 1 January 1982; 155 (1): 321–326. doi: https://doi.org/10.1084/jem.155.1.321
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