Rare subsets of highly polyfunctional supercells have the ability to secrete two or more cytokines, allowing them to execute diverse functions within immune response. These “supercells” can coordinate defenses against a variety of diseases, while conversely, “supervillain cells” drive inflammation, toxicity, and disease progression. Unmasking these superpowered cells through single-cell multiplexed cytokine analysis is critical to accelerating the development of advanced, curative medicines.
Immune cells are heterogenous and diverse in function, emphasizing the need to investigate cell populations at single-cell resolution to uncover those supercells driving immune response. To reveal cell function, it is necessary to investigate cytokines in a multiplexed manner as immune cells do “work” by secreting specific combinations of proteins. Analysis of cellular RNA or surface phenotypes alone may miss essential functional extracellular phenotypic differences that reveal the biological drivers of in vivo activity. Other techniques are limited in the number of effector proteins able to be measured per cell, decreasing the ability to evaluate the full spectrum of immune cell cytokine profile. IsoPlexis’ Single-Cell Secretome fills the existing gap with the unique ability to provide multiplexed secreted protein profiles of up to 30+ different cytokines from live single cells.
Unmasking the Supercells Behind Your Research
With the ability to analyze 30+ cytokines per cell, IsoPlexis’ technology can uniquely reveal the orchestrator immune supercells — the 5-10% of cells that are early actors in immune response. These subsets of highly functional cells can be beneficial (superheroes) or detrimental (supervillains) to human health. The presence of superhero cells is a key predictor of early and persistent response to cancer, efficacy of vaccines, and overall survival, whereas supervillain cells promote inflammation and disease pathogenesis. Characterizations of these cells have been published in various high impact journals:
- Superhero cells case study: In a recent study published in JITC, IsoPlexis’ Single-Cell Secretome solution demonstrated that increased effector cytokine polyfunctionality, decreased regulatory cytokine polyfunctionality, and decreased IL-10 secretion frequency from superhero CD4+ T cells were all associated with clinical benefit from combined immunotherapies.
- Supervillain cells case study: To understand the potential impact of polyfunctional cells on sustained inflammation experienced with long COVID, or post-acute sequelae of COVID-19 (PASC), researchers used IsoPlexis’ Single-Cell Secretome solution. The study, recently published in Cell, revealed a correlation between the increased frequency of “supervillain” T cell subsets, “supervillain” monocytes, or “resting” NK cells and disease severity in convalescent patients.
Learn More about Supercells by Exploring the Functional Cell Library
IsoPlexis has created the Functional Cell Library (FCL), a library of cells characterized by functional proteomics that was developed to make superpowered data easily available. By aggregating all of the existing peer-reviewed single-cell functional data, the FCL provides researchers with a powerful tool to understand how single-cell analysis can supercharge research, identify relevant case studies, and plan next-level, breakthrough experiments from early-stage R&D to clinical research.
Learn more about our unique biology here!