UMMS Affiliation

Department of Pathology

Publication Date


Document Type



Amsacrine; Animals; Camptothecin; Cells, Cultured; Cytotoxicity, Immunologic; DNA; *DNA Damage; DNA Topoisomerases, Type I; DNA Topoisomerases, Type II; Female; Killer Cells, Natural; Lymphocyte Depletion; Lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus; Male; Mice; Mice, Inbred Strains; T-Lymphocytes, Cytotoxic; Teniposide


Immunology and Infectious Disease | Medical Pathology


Cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTL) kill their target cells via a contact-dependent mechanism that results in the perturbation of the target cell's plasma membrane and the fragmentation of the target cell's DNA into nucleosomal particles. The membrane disruption is presumed to be due to the action of perforin, while the DNA fragmentation is thought to be by the activation of an endogenous nuclease(s). DNA topoisomerases I and II are nuclear enzymes with inherent endonuclease activities. We have investigated their role in the CTL-induced DNA fragmentation process. We report that in CTL killing assays, the treatment of target cells with topoisomerase I and II inhibitors blocks the CTL-induced DNA fragmentation process, but not the lysis of the target cell.


J Exp Med. 1992 Jan 1;175(1):23-7.

Journal/Book/Conference Title

The Journal of experimental medicine

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

PubMed ID