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Crit Rev Immunol. 2002;22(1):47-103.

The hepatic immune system.

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Department of Clinical Immunology, University of Göteborg, Sweden.


The liver regulates T-cell homeostasis, induces T-cell tolerance, and supports intrahepatic T-cell responses against hepatotropic pathogens. Many data from clinical and preclinical systems provide supportive evidence for these diverse roles of the liver in modulating peripheral (systemic, mucosal, and intrahepatic) T-cell immunity. Little information is available on the cellular and molecular mechanisms that mediate the dual role of the liver in tolerizing T-cell responses and in supporting intrahepatic priming of T-cell responses. Understanding these immunoregulatory effects in the liver may offer insight into clinically relevant immunopathologies of this organ.

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