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There are many causes of systemic complement activation, which may have detrimental effects on a pig xenograft. Transgenic expression of one or more human complement-regulatory proteins (hCRPs), e.g., hCD46, provides some protection to the xenograft, but it is not known whether it protects the xenograft from the effects of systemic complement activation. We used wild-type (WT) pig aortic endothelial cells (pAECs) to activate complement, and determined whether the expression of hCD46 on a1,3galactosyltransferase gene-knockout (GTKO) pAECs protected them from injury. CFSE-labeled and non-labeled pAECs from a WT, a GTKO, or a GTKO/hCD46 pig were separately incubated with heat-inactivated pooled human serum in vitro. Antibody pre-bonded CFSE-labeled and non-labeled pAECs were mixed, and then incubated with rabbit complement. The complement-dependent cytotoxicity was measured by flow cytometry. There was significantly less lysis of GTKO/CD46 pAECs (6%) by 50% human serum compared to that of WT (91%, p<0.001) or GTKO (32%, p<0.01) pAECs. The lysis of GTKO pAECs was significantly increased when mixed with WT pAECs (p<0.05). In contrast, there was no significant change in cytotoxicity of GTKO/CD46 pAECs when mixed with WT pAECs. The expression of hCD46 protected pAECs from systemic complement activation. Copyright © 2020 IJS Publishing Group Ltd. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Abhijit Jagdale, Huy Nguyen, Juan Li, KaLia Burnette, David Ayares, David K C Cooper, Hidetaka Hara. Does expression of a human complement-regulatory protein on xenograft cells protect them from systemic complement activation? International journal of surgery (London, England). 2020 Nov;83:184-188

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PMID: 32987208

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