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Immunol Cell Biol. 2015 Apr;93(4):347-54. doi: 10.1038/icb.2015.20. Epub 2015 Mar 17.

Chemokine-mediated immune responses in the female genital tract mucosa.

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Center for Immunology and Inflammatory Diseases, Division of Rheumatology, Allergy and Immunology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA.


The genital tract mucosa is the site where sexually transmitted infections gain entry to the host. The immune response at this site is thus critical to provide innate protection against pathogens that are seen for the very first time as well as provide long-term pathogen-specific immunity, which would be required for an effective vaccine against sexually transmitted infection. A finely regulated immune response is therefore required to provide an effective barrier against pathogens without compromising the capacity of the genital tract to allow for successful conception and fetal development. We review recent developments in our understanding of the immune response in the female genital tract to infectious pathogens, using herpes simplex virus-2, human immunodeficiency virus-1 and Chlamydia trachomatis as examples, with a particular focus on the role of chemokines in orchestrating immune cell migration necessary to achieve effective innate and adaptive immune responses in the female genital tract.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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