Granzyme K-deficient mice show no evidence of impaired antiviral immunity

Lars T Joeckel, Cody C. Allison, Marc Pellegrini, Catherina H Bird, Phillip I Bird

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5 Citations (Scopus)


The biological role of granzyme K, a serine protease of cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTL), is controversial. It has been reported to induce perforin-mediated cell death in vitro, but is also reported to be non-cytotoxic and to operate in inflammatory processes. To elucidate the biological role of this protease, we have deleted the granzyme K gene in mice (mutant allele: Gzmk tm1.1Pib; MGI:5636646). Gzmk -/- mice are healthy, anatomically normal, fecund and show normal hematopoietic development. Gzmk -/- mice readily recover from lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus and mouse pox Ectromelia virus infection. Ex vivo, virus-specific granzyme K-deficient CTL are indistinguishable from those of wild-type mice in apoptosis induction of target cells. These data suggest that granzyme K does not play an essential role in viral immunity or cytotoxicity. Our granzyme K knockout line completes the collection of mouse models for the human granzymes, and will further our understanding of their biological roles and relationships.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)676-683
Number of pages8
JournalImmunology and Cell Biology
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2017

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