Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Nat Med. 2004 Oct;10(10):1104-10. Epub 2004 Sep 26.

Central memory T cells mediate long-term immunity to Leishmania major in the absence of persistent parasites.

Author information

  • 1Department of Pathobiology, University of Pennsylvania, 3800 Spruce Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104, USA.


Infection with Leishmania major induces a protective immune response and long-term resistance to reinfection, which is thought to depend upon persistent parasites. Here we demonstrate that although effector CD4(+) T cells are lost in the absence of parasites, central memory CD4(+) T cells are maintained. Upon secondary infection, these central memory T cells become tissue-homing effector T cells and mediate protection. Thus, immunity to L. major is mediated by at least two distinct populations of CD4(+) T cells: short-lived pathogen-dependent effector cells and long-lived pathogen-independent central memory cells. These data suggest that central memory T cells should be the targets for nonlive vaccines against infectious diseases requiring cell-mediated immunity.

Comment in

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Nature Publishing Group
    Loading ...
    Support Center