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J Immunol. 2013 May 1;190(9):4707-16. doi: 10.4049/jimmunol.1203465. Epub 2013 Apr 1.

Inoculation dose of Mycobacterium tuberculosis does not influence priming of T cell responses in lymph nodes.

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Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, PA 15261, USA.


The effect of Mycobacterium tuberculosis inocula size on T cell priming in the lymph node and effector T cells in the lung remains controversial. In this study, we used a naive mouse model, without the transfer of transgenic T cells, in conjunction with mathematical model to test whether infection with higher aerosolized inocula would lead to increased priming of M. tuberculosis-specific T cells in the lung-draining lymph node. Our data do not support that inoculum size has a measurable influence on T cell priming in the lymph nodes but is associated with more cells overall in the lung, including T cells. To account for increased T cells in the lungs, we tested several possible mechanisms, and recruitment of T cells to the lungs was most influenced by inoculum dose. We also identified IL-10 as a possible mechanism to explain the lack of influence of inoculum dose on priming of T cells in the lymph node.

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