The CD4 glycoprotein, expressed on leukocytes belonging to subsets of T lymphocytes and to cells of monocyte/macrophage lineage, participates in the functioning of T cells and serves as a receptor for HIV-1 and HIV-2. Human eosinophils, a class of granulocytic leukocytes, have been found to express CD4. With anti-CD4 mAbs CD4 was demonstrable on eosinophils from both normal and eosinophilic donors. Eosinophils synthesized a 55-kD CD4 polypeptide immunoprecipitable with two anti-CD4 mAbs. Eosinophil CD4 bound HIV-1 gp120 as assessed by competition for anti-OKT4A, but not anti-OKT4, mAb binding. Eosinophils, normally rich in gastrointestinal and genitourinary tract tissues, increase in numbers in patients with metazoan parasitic infections. In these sites and diseases, CD4 expression by eosinophils may be pertinent to their immunologic functions and could make these cells susceptible to HIV infection.

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