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Curr Top Microbiol Immunol. 2006;298:183-206.

NK cell recognition of mouse cytomegalovirus-infected cells.

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McGill Center for Host Resistance, and Department of Microbiology and Immunology, McGill University, 3775 University St., Montreal Quebec, H3A 2B4, Canada.


Natural killer (NK) cells and cytomegalovirus have been locked in an evolutionary arms race for millions of years in an attempt to overwhelm each other. Cytomegaloviruses deploy cunning disguises to avoid detection by NK cells. Studies of the mouse model of infection have shown that NK cells deploy multiple mechanisms to deal with mouse cytomegalovirus (MCMV) infection, which involve receptors of the C-lectin type superfamily. Remarkably, these receptors have two additional common features: They map to the same genetic region, known as the NK cell gene complex; and they recognize MHC class I-related structures. While reviewing these attack-counterattack measures, this chapter points to the central role that recognition of the MCMV-infected cells by NK cells plays in host resistance to infection.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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