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Eur J Immunol. 2000 Jul;30(7):1823-9.

Functionally distinct CD8+ memory T cell subsets in persistent EBV infection are differentiated by migratory receptor expression.

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Virology Unit, GlaxoWellcome Research and Development, Stevenage, GB.


Human memory T lymphocytes have recently been re-defined as central or effector memory cells (Sallusto, F., Lenig, D., Forster, R., Lipp, M. and Lanzavecchia, A., Nature 1999. 401: 708-712). Effector memory cells (T(em)) are targeted to the peripheral tissues and show rapid effector function in response to antigenic stimulation. Central memory (T(cm)) cells are targeted to the lymph nodes and cannot be immediately activated. In this report HLA-A2-Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) peptide tetramers have been used to characterize the EBV-specific CD8+ T cell subsets in persistent EBV infection. In short-term activation studies two populations of tetramer-positive T cells were identified. One group resembled T(em) cells in that they rapidly produced IFN-gamma and lacked the lymph node homing receptor, CD62L, the second was similar to T(cm) cells since they were CD62L+ but could not be immediately induced to express IFN-gamma.

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