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Curr Opin Immunol. 2005 Oct;17(5):480-5.

Memory T cell homeostasis and senescence during aging.

Author information

1
Department of Immunology and Molecular Pathology, Division of Infection and Immunity, University College London, UK. aakbar@ucl.ac.uk

Abstract

Human memory T cell pools proliferate and differentiate at varying rates that are determined by the frequency of lifelong antigenic re-encounter with different specific antigens. An important question concerning immunity is whether certain specific pools of memory T cells are driven to exhaustion in elderly subjects, a pertinent point in view of increasing human life expectancy. An emerging consensus is that cytomegalovirus (CMV), a beta-herpesvirus with a prevalence of 60-90% worldwide, is an agent that induces specific T cells to extreme differentiation. The question that begs to be answered is whether this can explain why CMV seropositivity and the presence of highly differentiated CMV-specific T cells are included in a cluster of immune parameters that have been shown recently to predict the early mortality of elderly humans.

PMID:
16098721
DOI:
10.1016/j.coi.2005.07.019
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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