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J Immunol. 2002 Mar 1;168(5):2225-32.

Functional expression of the chemokine receptor CCR5 on virus epitope-specific memory and effector CD8+ T cells.

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  • 1Division of Viral Immunology, Center for AIDS Research, Kumamoto University, 2-2-1 Honjo, Kyokushi, Kumamoto 860-0811, Japan.


Because the chemokine receptor CCR5 is expressed on Th1 CD4(+) cells, it is important to investigate the expression and function of this receptor on other T cells involved in Th1 immune responses, such as Ag-specific CD8(+) T cells, which to date have been only partially characterized. Therefore, we analyzed the expression and function of CCR5 on virus-specific CD8+ T cells identified by HLA class I tetramers. Multicolor flow cytometry analysis demonstrated that CCR5 is expressed on memory (CD28+CD45RA-) and effector (CD28-CD45RA- and CD28-CD45RA+) CD8+ T cells but not on naive (CD28+CD45RA+) CD8+ T cells. CCR5 expression was much lower on two effector CD8+ T cells than on memory CD8+ T cells. Analysis of CCR7 and CCR5 expression on the different types of CD8+ T cells showed that memory CD8+ T cells have three phenotypic subsets, CCR5+CCR7-, CCR5+CCR7+, and CCR5-CCR7+, while naive and effector CD8+ T cells have CCR5-CCR7+ and CCR5+CCR7- phenotypes, respectively. These results suggest the following sequence for differentiation of memory CD8+ T cells: CCR5-CCR7+-->CCR5+CCR7+-->CCR5+CCR7-. CCR5+CD8+ T cells effectively migrated in response to RANTES, suggesting that CCR5 plays a critical role in the migration of Ag-specific effector and differentiated memory CD8+ T cells to inflammatory tissues and secondary lymphoid tissues. This is in contrast to CCR7, which functions as a homing receptor in migration of naive and memory CD8+ T cells to secondary lymphoid tissues.

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