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Nat Immunol. 2000 Nov;1(5):426-32.

Interleukin-7 mediates the homeostasis of naïve and memory CD8 T cells in vivo.

Author information

1
Department of Medicine, University of Connecticut Health Center, Farmington, CT 06030, USA.

Abstract

The naïve and memory T lymphocyte pools are maintained through poorly understood homeostatic mechanisms that may include signaling via cytokine receptors. We show that interleukin-7 (IL-7) plays multiple roles in regulating homeostasis of CD8+ T cells. We found that IL-7 was required for homeostatic expansion of naïve CD8+ and CD4+ T cells in lymphopenic hosts and for CD8+ T cell survival in normal hosts. In contrast, IL-7 was not necessary for growth of CD8+ T cells in response to a virus infection but was critical for generating T cell memory. Up-regulation of Bcl-2 in the absence of IL-7 signaling was impaired after activation in vivo. Homeostatic proliferation of memory cells was also partially dependent on IL-7. These results point to IL-7 as a pivotal cytokine in T cell homeostasis.

PMID:
11062503
DOI:
10.1038/80868
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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