PerspectiveImmunology

Training T cells for tissue residence

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Science  11 Oct 2019:
Vol. 366, Issue 6462, pp. 188-189
DOI: 10.1126/science.aaz3289

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Summary

Immune responses require mobilization of innate cells and lymphocytes in sites of antigen encounter. For T lymphocytes, newly developed naïve T cells populate secondary lymphoid organs such as lymph nodes (LNs), where they become activated by dendritic cells (DCs) presenting antigenic and costimulatory signals. The resultant activated effector cells migrate to tissues to coordinate antigen clearance in situ, after which a subset persists as noncirculating, tissue-resident memory T (TRM) cells. TRM cells are generated in multiple anatomic sites in mice and humans, in response to pathogens, vaccines, allergens, and autoantigens (1). Mouse infection models demonstrate a critical role for TRM cells in protective immunity (2), and TRM cells can promote immunopathology in allergic and inflammatory diseases of the lungs, skin, and gut (3). On page 202 of this issue, Mani et al. (4) characterize a pathway of TRM cell development in the skin, which may improve vaccination strategies.

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