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Immunol Rev. 2003 Dec;196:65-74.

In remembrance of things past: memory T cells and transplant rejection.

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Department of Immunology, The Cleveland Clinic Foundation, 9500 Euclid Avenue NB30, Cleveland, OH 44195, USA.


A cardinal feature of the adaptive immune response is its ability to generate long-lived populations of memory T lymphocytes. Memory T cells are specific to the antigen encountered during the primary immune response and react rapidly and vigorously upon re-encounter with the same antigen. Memory T cells that recognize microbial antigens provide the organism with long-lasting protection against potentially fatal infections. On the other hand, memory T cells that recognize donor alloantigens can jeopardize the survival of life-saving organ transplants. We review here the immunobiology of memory T cells and describe their role in the rejection of solid organ allografts.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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