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Curr Opin Immunol. 2006 Aug;18(4):458-64. Epub 2006 Jun 12.

Protective immunity towards intracellular pathogens.

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  • 1Clinical Cooperation Group, Antigen Specific Immunotherapy, GSF, Institute of Health and Environment and Technical University of Munich, Germany.

Abstract

Immunity towards intracellular pathogens is often dependent upon the generation of CD8(+) memory T cells, which provide long-lasting and effective protection. Over the past few years, we have gained novel insights into the heterogeneity of CD8(+) T cells, time points of lineage commitment, and lineage relationships between subpopulations. These studies suggest that memory CD8(+) T cells progressively develop from naïve cells early during the immune response and further differentiate unidirectionally into short-living effector cells. We have also learnt that different memory subsets play distinct roles in conferring protection: whereas effector memory T cells are able to provide immediate protection but are not necessarily maintained long-term, central memory T cells have the potential for constant self-renewal. Thus, neither subset really fulfills all criteria of memory. As protective effector memory cells can develop from central memory cells, vaccination strategies should focus on induction of a balanced ratio of the two memory T cell subsets.

PMID:
16765577
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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