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Cytotoxic T-cell memory without antigen.

Authors
  • Lau, L L
  • Jamieson, B D
  • Somasundaram, T
  • Ahmed, R
Type
Published Article
Journal
Nature
Publication Date
Jun 23, 1994
Volume
369
Issue
6482
Pages
648–652
Identifiers
PMID: 7516038
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

Memory is a hallmark of the immune system and ever since its recognition there has been considerable interest in understanding how immunity is maintained. The current model is that long-term memory is dependent on persistent antigenic stimulation. We report here results that challenge this view and provide evidence that antigen is not essential for the maintenance of CD8+ T-cell memory. We show that memory CD8+ cytotoxic T lymphocytes persist indefinitely in the absence of priming antigen, retain the memory phenotype (CD44hi), and provide protection against virus challenge. These findings suggest a re-evaluation of our current thinking on mechanisms involved in maintaining immunity and have implications towards designing effective vaccination strategies.

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