Robust CD8+ T-cell activation is vital for the recovery from many viral infections and is orchestrated via the integration of signals delivered through surface molecules, including the T-cell antigen receptors (TcRs) and cytokine receptors. Little is known about how virus-specific T cells interpret sequential or combined stimulation through these receptors, which must undoubtedly occur in vivo during antiviral immune responses. When measured in real time, peptide antigen and the cytokines, interleukin 12 (IL-12) and IL-18, independently regulate the on/off kinetics of protective (Interferon γ, tumor necrosis factor α) and immunomodulatory (IL-2, CD40L) cytokine production by activated T cells and memory T cells. The remarkable differences in effector functions elicited by innate or adaptive signals (IL-12/ IL-18 or peptide, respectively) illustrate the complex and stringent regulation of cytokine expression by CD8+ T cells. Together, these results indicate how antiviral T cells incorporate multiple signals from their local microenvironment and tailor their cytokine responses accordingly.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cell Biology