Main content area

Influence of zinc deficiency and supplementation on NK cell cytotoxicity

Rolles, Benjamin, Maywald, Martina, Rink, Lothar
Journal of functional foods 2018 v.48 pp. 322-328
cytotoxicity, human cell lines, interleukin-2, natural killer cells, nutrient deficiencies, zinc
Knowledge about the role of zinc on natural killer (NK) cell activity and function is limited and needs further instigation. Hence, in this study, the influence of interleukin (IL)-1, IL-2, zinc, and the zinc-chelator N,N,N′,N′-tetrakis(2-pyridylmethyl)ethane-1,2-diamine (TPEN) on the human NK cell line (YTS cell line) and primary NK cells were examined. We mainly focused on NK cell killing activity by using the K562 cell line as target cells. We uncovered a significantly increased NK cell killing activity due to 1 h zinc pre-incubation and contact to zinc-rich medium in physiological concentrations. Moreover, co-stimulation of zinc and IL-2 provoked an additive increase in NK cell killing activity. In contrast, zinc deficiency induced by 1 h TPEN pre-incubation significantly decreased the killing activity of primary NK cells. Temporary elevated intracellular zinc levels in target cells act contrary to the destruction by NK cells.