A Tac-positive B cell line termed K3B was established from a patient with adult T cell leukemia (ATL). This cell line had EBNA antigen and human T cell leukemic virus (HTLV) provirus besides B1 antigen and surface immunoglobulin. A cloned Tac-positive B cell line termed K3B01 was obtained from K3B by the limiting dilution method. The K3B01 cells were shown to absorb IL 2 activity in a tonsillar IL 2 preparation. By using this cloned cell line and a purified recombinant IL 2 preparation, it was shown that the proliferation of K3B01 cells was enhanced by the addition of recombinant IL 2. Moreover, this response was inhibited by anti-Tac antibody. These results demonstrate definitively that IL 2 acts directly on B cells through IL 2 receptors on them.

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