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Science. 2000 Apr 28;288(5466):675-8.

Control of homeostasis of CD8+ memory T cells by opposing cytokines.

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Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Department of Medicine, National Jewish Medical and Research Center, University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, Denver, CO 80206, USA.


Memory T cells maintain their numbers for long periods after antigen exposure. Here we show that CD8+ T cells of memory phenotype divide slowly in animals. This division requires interleukin-15 and is markedly increased by inhibition of interleukin-2 (IL-2). Therefore, the numbers of CD8+ memory T cells in animals are controlled by a balance between IL-15 and IL-2.

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