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J Immunol. 2003 Dec 1;171(11):5997-6005.

OX40-mediated memory T cell generation is TNF receptor-associated factor 2 dependent.

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  • 1Earle A. Chiles Research Institute, Robert W. Franz Cancer Research Center, Providence Portland Medical Center, Portland, OR 97213, USA.


Tumor necrosis factor receptor-associated factor 2 (TRAF2), an adapter protein that associates with the cytoplasmic tail of OX40, may play a critical role in OX40-mediated signal transduction. To investigate the in vivo role of TRAF2 in OX40-mediated generation of Ag-specific memory T cells, we bred OVA-specific TCR transgenic mice to TRAF2 dominant-negative (TRAF2 DN) mice. Following Ag stimulation and OX40 engagement of TRAF2 DN T cells in vivo, the number of long-lived OVA-specific T cells and effector T cell function was dramatically reduced when compared with wild-type T cells. We also demonstrate that CTLA-4 is down-regulated following OX40 engagement in vivo and the OX40-specific TRAF2 DN defect was partially overcome by CTLA-4 blockade in vivo. The data provide evidence that TRAF2 is linked to OX40-mediated memory T cell expansion and survival, and point to the down-regulation of CTLA-4 as a possible control element to enhance early T cell expansion through OX40 signaling.

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