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Nat Immunol. 2002 Nov;3(11):1082-9. Epub 2002 Oct 21.

Sustained and dynamic inositol lipid metabolism inside and outside the immunological synapse.

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Lymphocyte Activation Laboratory, Cancer Research UK London Research Institute, Lincoln's Inn Fields Laboratories, 44 Lincoln's Inn Fields, London WC2A 3PX, UK.


T cell activation is triggered by several hours of contact with peptide-major histocompatibility (MHC) complexes on the surface of antigen-presenting cells (APCs). The nature and location of the sustained signal transduction pathways required for T cell activation are unknown. We show here that the production of phosphatidylinositol(3,4,5)triphosphate (PIP3) was dynamically sustained for hours as T cells responded to antigen. In addition, sustained elevation of PIP3 was essential for T cell proliferation. There was PIP3 accumulation in the T cell-APC contact zone and at the antipodal pole of the cell. The immune synapse is thus not the sole site of sustained signal transduction in activated T cells.

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