CD8+ T-cell alveolitis in familial pulmonary alveolar microlithiasis

G. de Laurentiis, L. Vitiello, L. Racioppi, F. Perna, M. Galgani, G. Merola, P. Carratù, M. Maniscalco, S. Marsico, M. Sofia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Pulmonary alveolar microlithiasis (PAM) is a rare diffuse lung characterised by the accumulation of calcium phosphate microliths within the alveoli. The causative mechanism of PAM has only recently been discovered, and involves a gene mutation of sodium phosphate co-transporter, which is expressed by alveolar epithelial cells. This mutation may have variable consequences on the clinical phenotype. However, pulmonary cell immune phenotyping in familial PAM has not previously been assessed. In the present article, the analysis of bronchoalveolar lavage fluid of two siblings with PAM diagnosis revealed a pattern of lymphocytic alveolitis with accumulation of CD8+ T-cells. The clonal complexity of this lymphocyte's population was assayed by spectratyping, which showed an oligocional accumulation of T-cells with a restricted variable beta T-cell receptor (TCR) gene usage. TCR analysis in peripheral blood lymphocytes revealed no abnormal patterns of T-lymphocytes. In the pulmonary alveolar microlithiasis familial cases reported, CD8-mediated maladaptive immune response may have taken place in the bronchoalveolar compartment. The relationship between this immune dysregulation and genetic background in pulmonary alveolar microlithiasis warrants further investigation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)165-171
Number of pages7
JournalEuropean Respiratory Journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2007


  • Bronchoalveolar lavage
  • Diffuse lung disease
  • Pulmonary alveolar microlithiasis
  • T-CD6 lymphocytes
  • T-receptor repertoire

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine


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