Mol Med Rep.2017 Oct;16(4):4593-4602. doi: 10.3892/mmr.2017.7201.

CD147 blockade as a potential and novel treatment of graft rejection

Jing Luan  1 Yu Zhao  1 Yang Zhang  1 Jinlin Miao  1 Jia Li  1 Zhi-Nan Chen  1 Ping Zhu  1

1 National Translational Science Center for Molecular Medicine, The Fourth Military Medical University, Xi’an, Shaanxi 710032, P.R. China.


Cluster of differentiation (CD)147 is highly involved in the T cell activation process. High CD147 expression is observed on the surfaces of activated T cells, particularly CD4+ T cells. In organ transplantation, it is important to prevent graft rejection resulting from the excessive activation of T cells, particularly CD4+ T cells, which exhibit a key role in amplifying the immune response. The present study aimed to investigate the effects of CD147 blockade in vitro and in vivo and used a transplant rejection system to assess the feasibility of utilizing CD147 antibody‑based immunosuppressant drugs for the treatment of graft rejection. The effects of CD147 antibodies were evaluated on lymphocyte proliferation stimulated by phytohemagglutinin or CD3/CD28 magnetic beads and in a one‑way mixed lymphocyte reaction (MLR) system in vitro. For the in vivo analysis, an allogeneic skin transplantation mouse model was used. CD147 antibodies were effective against lymphocytes, particularly CD4+T lymphocytes, and were additionally effective in the one‑way MLR system. In the allogeneic skin transplantation mouse model, the survival of transplanted skin was extended in the CD147 antibody‑treated group. Furthermore, the level of inflammatory cell infiltration in transplanted skin was reduced. CD147 blockade decreased the serum levels of interleukin (IL)‑17 and the proportions of peripheral blood CD4+ and CD8+ memory T cells. The data demonstrated that CD147 blockade suppressed skin graft rejection, primarily by suppressing CD4+T and memory T cell proliferation, indicating that CD147 exhibits great potential as a target of immunosuppressant drugs.