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Nat Rev Mol Cell Biol. 2001 May;2(5):378-86.

A weak signal for strong responses: interferon-alpha/beta revisited.

Author information

1
Department of Immunology, Graduate School of Medicine and Faculty of Medicine, University of Tokyo, Hongo 7-3-1, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-0033, Japan. tada@m.u-tokyo.ac.jp

Abstract

Biological systems have acquired adaptability and robustness against rapid environmental changes. A typical example is the immune system, which eradicates invading pathogens such as viruses. Interferons alpha and beta, which are produced in response to viral infection, are essential components of this system but are also produced at low levels in the absence of infection. What is the purpose of the constitutive weak interferon-alpha/beta signal?

PMID:
11331912
DOI:
10.1038/35073080
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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