Lymphocyte homing patterns in young (3-5 months old) and old (10-12 months old) autoimmune prone NZB mice were investigated by transferring 51Cr labelled lymphoid cells into syngeneic and H-2 compatible allogeneic recipients. We confirmed that non H-2 alloantigens as well as H-2 alloantigens can be important determinants of apparent abnormalities of cellular distribution with the techniques employed. No gross abnormalities of lymphocyte traffic were present in the young NZB mice as compared to the autoimmune resistant strains of mice when syngeneic cells are used. Spleen of older NZB mice appeared to be less attractive to lymph node cells than was the spleen from young NZB mice. Splenocytes of older NZB mice localized significantly more in the liver and less in the lymph nodes as compared with splenocytes from young NZB mice. The mechanisms underlying abnormalities of lymphoid cell distribution which feature the autoimmune-prone NZB mice are not yet clear and further studies will be necessary before they can be characterized definitively. Our findings, using syngeneic cells, are in disagreement with those of Zatz and Lance since evidence of abnormal distribution of lymphocytes in young NZB mice were not seen when syngeneic cells were employed.
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