Open Access Open Badges Research article

Expression of TNF-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL) in keratinocytes mediates apoptotic cell death in allogenic T cells

Kerstin Reimers1*, Christine Radtke1, Claudia Y Choi1, Christina Allmeling1, Susanne Kall1, Paul Kiefer2, Thomas Muehlberger1 and Peter M Vogt1

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Plastic, Hand and Reconstructive Surgery, Medical School Hannover Podbielskistraße 380, 30659 Hannover, Germany

2 University Duesseldorf, Moorenstrasse 5, 40225 Duesseldorf, Germany

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Annals of Surgical Innovation and Research 2009, 3:13  doi:10.1186/1750-1164-3-13

Published: 19 November 2009


The objective of the present study was to evaluate the aptitude of TRAIL gene expression for inducing apoptosis in co-cultivated T-cells. This should allow preparing a strategy for the development of a durable, allogenic skin substitute based on the induction of an immune-privileged transplant. In order to counteract the significant potential of rejection in transplanted allogenic keratinocytes, we created a murine keratinocyte cell line which expressed TRAIL through stable gene transfer. The exogenic protein was localized on the cellular surface and was not found in soluble condition as sTRAIL. Contact to TRAIL expressing cells in co-culture induced cell death in sensitive Jurkat-cells, which was further intensified by lymphocyte activation. This cytotoxic effect is due to the induction of apoptosis. We therefore assume that the de-novo expression of TRAIL in keratinocytes can trigger apoptosis in activated lymphocytes and thus prevent the rejection of keratinocytes in allogenic, immune-privileged transplants.