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Flow cytometric analysis of CD4 and T-lymphocytes of chronic amphetamine and alcohol abuse

K. M. Mehdar, A. R. Alrafiah


Introduction: Drug and alcohol abuse has significant negative impacts on individuals’ life, health status and communities. They have also been implicated immunity system diseases. Therefore we aim to investigate the impact of chronic amphetamine abuse or co-abuse of alcohol with amphetamine on immunity, especially CD3 T cells, as well as the response of CD4 and CD8 T cells. Patients and methods: A research sample comprising of 53 individuals younger than 40 years of age was employed to perform a retrospective case study within the setting of the Al-Amal Psychiatric Hospital. Individuals were distributed into 3 groups as the following: group (i) 17 patients abused amphetamine only for five years, group (ii) 17 patients’ co-abused alcohol and amphetamine or five years, and group (iii) composed of 19 non-abusers of similar age and sex was selected as control. Flow cytometry was conducted for the collection and analysis of CD3+CD4+ and CD3+CD8+ monoclonal antibodies from blood samples. Results: In contrast to the control group, amphetamine abuser patients showed a significantly decrease of the mean levels of CD3+CD4+ (#Event), CD3+CD8+ (#Event) and CD3+CD8+ (% Total). Meanwhile, levels of CD3+CD4+ (% Parent) was significantly higher in patients versus control (P = 0.001). furthermore, In the amphetamine abuse patient group, there were significant positive correlations between CD3+CD4+ (#Event) and CD3+CD4+ (% Total); CD3+CD8+ (#Event); Between CD3+CD4+ (% Parent) and CD3+CD8+ (% Parent) and CD3+CD8+ (% Total); Between CD3+CD4+ (% Total) and CD3+CD8+ (#Event); Between CD3+CD8+ % Parent) and CD3+CD8+ (% Total). Conclusion: The present work shed light on the reaction of CD4 and CD8 T cells to chronic amphetamine and alcohol abuse, which was found to induce changes in the systemic immune response. Interestingly, amphetamine abuse markedly changes the systemic immune as they diminished CD3+CD4+ and CD3+CD8+ T cells, and amphetamine and co-abuse alcohol affected CD3 cells significantly.


Amphetamine; alcohol; T cells; CD3; CD4; CD8

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