An Investigation into the Role of Protein Kinases in T lymphocyte Migration

  • Adam Webb

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisPhD


The migration of T lymphocytes is a vital component of the immune system, with roles in immunosurveillance and inflammation. The role of Phosphoinositide 3-kinase within T lymphocyte migration is unclear, with some evidence that it may be a disposable signal. Here, using Staphylococcal Enterotoxin B activated peripheral blood mononuclear cells and the T cell line CEM cells, the role of Phosphoinositide 3-kinase and its downstream kinases was investigated. CCL22 mediated CEM cell migration and CXCL12 mediated peripheral blood mononuclear cell migration were shown to be independent of Phosphoinositide 3-kinase using several different broad-spectrum Phosphoinositide 3-kinase inhibitors. However, these cells were Akt-dependent, as demonstrated by incubation with the Akt inhibitor Akti-1/2. Differences in the effect of the inhibitors on Akt activity were discovered, indicating that either Akt can be activated in the absence of Phosphoinositide 3-kinase, or differences exist regarding the relative abundance of each protein within the cell. Th17 cells are a subtype of the T helper cell family and have been shown to be involved in inflammation and immune diseases. Mouse splenocytes were polarised to a Th17 phenotype and analysed for the surface expression of chemokine receptors. CCR2, CCR6 and CCR9 were shown to be expressed on Th17 cells and upregulated under Th17 polarising conditions. However, only CCR2 and CCR6 induced migration of Th17 cells. This migration was sensitive to Phosphoinositide 3-kinase and Akt inhibitors. This data reveals a model for the migration of Th17 cells to areas of inflammation, and sheds light on the role of Phosphoinositide 3-kinase during this process.
Date of Award1 Mar 2009
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • University of Bath
SupervisorStephen Ward (Supervisor)


  • Chemokine Th17
  • P13K
  • Chemotoxis
  • T Lymphocyte

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