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J Transl Med. 2007 Mar 28;5:17.

CMV pp65 and IE-1 T cell epitopes recognized by healthy subjects.

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  • 1Department of Transfusion Medicine, Warren G Magnuson Clinical Center, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland, USA. sslezak@cc.nih.gov



Adoptive immune and vaccine therapies have been used to prevent cytomegalovirus (CMV) disease in recipients of hematopoietic progenitor cell transplants, but the nature of T cell responses to CMV have not been completely characterized.


Peptide pools and individual peptides derived from the immune-dominant CMV proteins pp65 and IE-1 and antigen-specific, cytokine flow cytometry were used to characterize the prevalence and frequency of CD4+ and CD8+ memory T cells in 20 healthy CMV-seropositive subjects.


CD8+ T cell responses to pp65 were detected in 35% of subjects and to IE-1 in 40% of subjects. CD4+ T cell responses to pp65 were detected in 50% of subjects, but none were detected to IE-1. Several new IE-1 HLA class I epitopes were identified, including 4 restricted to HLA-C antigens. One region of IE-1 spanning amino acids 300 to 327 was rich in class I epitopes. The HLA class I restrictions of IE-1 peptides were more promiscuous than those of pp65 peptides.


Since naturally occurring CD4+ and CD8+ T cell responses to pp65 were detectable in many subjects, but only CD8+ T cell responses to IE-1 were detected, pp65 may be better than IE-1 for use in vaccine and adoptive immune therapies.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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