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Science 304 (5670): 590-593

Copyright © 2004 by the American Association for the Advancement of Science

CD8{alpha}{alpha}-Mediated Survival and Differentiation of CD8 Memory T Cell Precursors

Loui T. Madakamutil,1 Urs Christen,1 Christopher J. Lena,1 Yiran Wang-Zhu,1 Antoine Attinger,1 Monisha Sundarrajan,1 Wilfried Ellmeier,2* Matthias G. von Herrath,1 Peter Jensen,3 Dan R. Littman,2 Hilde Cheroutre1{dagger}

Abstract: Memory T cells are long-lived antigen-experienced T cells that are generally accepted to be direct descendants of proliferating primary effector cells. However, the factors that permit selective survival of these T cells are not well established. We show that homodimeric {alpha} chains of the CD8 molecule (CD8{alpha}{alpha}) are transiently induced on a selected subset of CD8{alpha}ß+ T cells upon antigenic stimulation. These CD8{alpha}{alpha} molecules promote the survival and differentiation of activated lymphocytes into memory CD8 T cells. Thus, memory precursors can be identified among primary effector cells and are selected for survival and differentiation by CD8{alpha}{alpha}.

1 La Jolla Institute for Allergy and Immunology, 10355 Science Center Drive, San Diego, CA 92121, USA.
2 Howard Hughes Medical Institute and Skirball Institute of Biomedical Science, New York University School of Medicine, New York, NY 10016, USA.
3 Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA 30322, USA.

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* Present address: Institute of Immunology, University of Vienna, Brunner Strasse 59, 1235 Vienna, Austria.

{dagger} To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: hilde{at}

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