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Immunol Rev. 2011 Nov;244(1):149-68. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-065X.2011.01062.x.

OX40:OX40L axis: emerging targets for improving poxvirus-based CD8(+) T-cell vaccines against respiratory viruses.

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Division of Immune Regulation, La Jolla Institute for Allergy and Immunology, San Diego, CA, USA.


The human respiratory tract is an entry point for over 200 known viruses that collectively contribute to millions of annual deaths worldwide. Consequently, the World Health Organization has designated respiratory viral infections as a priority for vaccine development. Despite enormous advances in understanding the attributes of a protective mucosal antiviral immune response, current vaccines continue to fail in effectively generating long-lived protective CD8(+) T-cell immunity. To date, the majority of licensed human vaccines afford protection against infectious pathogens through the generation of specific immunoglobulin responses. In recent years, the selective manipulation of specific costimulatory pathways, which are critical in regulating T cell-mediated immune responses, has generated increasing interest. Impressive results in animal models have shown that the tumor necrosis factor receptor (TNFR) family member OX40 (CD134) and its binding partner OX40L (CD252) are key costimulatory molecules involved in the generation of protective CD8(+) T-cell responses at mucosal surfaces, such as the lung. In this review, we highlight these new findings with a particular emphasis on their potential as immunological adjuvants to enhance poxvirus-based CD8(+) T-cell vaccines.

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