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Cell Mol Life Sci. 2005 Dec;62(23):2853-66.

Mucosal effector memory T cells: the other side of the coin.

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  • 1The La Jolla Institute for Allergy and Immunology, 10355 Science Center Drive, San Diego, CA 92121, USA. hilde@liai.org

Abstract

Immunological memory allows for rapid and effective protective immunity to previously encountered pathogens. New insights in understanding specific memory differentiation and function have now indicated that in addition to providing enhanced immunity, an important purpose of immunological memory is to provide immediate protection at all sites of the body, including non-lymphoid tissues. Effector memory CD8 T cells have the capacity to reside long-term at epithelial surfaces, where they allow for rapid containment of the invading pathogens at the local entry site and prevent systemic spreading and excessive immune responses. The accumulation of tissue-specific memory T cell subsets, together with cross-reactivity of these antigen-experienced T cells even to unrelated pathogens, provides flexibility and expansion of their specificity repertoire that over time greatly surpasses that of the declining naïve T cell populations. This review will discuss new insights into T cell memory. We will focus in particular on the generation and function of effector memory CD8 T cells at the intestinal mucosa, which represents one of the largest entry sites for pathogens.

PMID:
16314932
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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