Existing methods for the production of lymphocytes from the small intestine have proved unsatisfactory when applied to the mouse. We report here a new method for the production of highly pure suspensions of lymphoid cells from the epithelial layer and lamina propria of mouse small intestine. The production and purification methods are described in detail. At least ten million lymphocytes are obtainable from each small intestine from either the epithelium or lamina propria and the cell suspensions are shown to be little contaminated by non-lymphoid cells. Preliminary analysis of the two cell types indicates that they belong either to two separate populations or to one population in very different stages of differentiation. The use of purified lymphoid cells from the epithelium and lamina propria of the small intestine may enable examination of the generation of cytotoxicity towards gut epithelial cells; this may be important in the development of inflammatory bowel diseases.
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