Attrition of virus-specific memory CD8+ T cells during reconstitution of lymphopenic environments

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Pathology

Publication Date


Document Type



*Adoptive Transfer; Animals; Antigens, CD44; Apoptosis; Arenaviridae Infections; CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes; effects; Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte; Homeostasis; *Immunologic Memory; Lymphocyte Count; Lymphocytic Choriomeningitis; Lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus; Lymphopenia; Male; Mice; Mice, Inbred C57BL; Mice, Knockout; Mice, SCID; Pichinde virus; Radiation Chimera; Spleen; T-Lymphocyte Subsets


Life Sciences | Medicine and Health Sciences


Viruses can cause a severe lymphopenia early in infection and a subsequent, lasting loss of pre-existing CD8(+) memory T cells. We therefore questioned how well virus Ag-specific memory CD8(+) T cells could reconstitute mice rendered lymphopenic as a consequence of genetics, irradiation, or viral or poly(I:C)-induced cytokines. In each case, reconstitution of the CD8(+) compartment was associated with limited division of virus-specific memory T cells and a reduction in their proportion. This indicates that foreign Ag-experienced CD44(high)CD8(+) memory T cells may respond differently to homeostatic signals than other CD44(high)CD8(+) cells, and that events inducing lymphopenia may lead to a permanent reduction in T cell memory.


J Immunol. 2003 Jul 15;171(2):655-63.

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Journal of immunology (Baltimore, Md. : 1950)

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Link to Article in PubMed

PubMed ID