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Sci. STKE, 4 September 2007
Vol. 2007, Issue 402, p. pe48
[DOI: 10.1126/stke.4022007pe48]

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T Cell Activation by TLRs: A Role for TLRs in the Adaptive Immune Response

Heather MacLeod1 and Lee M. Wetzler2*

1Department of Microbiology, Immunology Training Program, and
2Department of Medicine, Section of Infectious Diseases, Evans Biomedical Research Center, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA 02118, USA.

Abstract: Toll-like receptor (TLR) activation is primarily thought to affect antigen-presenting cells (APCs) by inducing an innate immune response that can subsequently activate the adaptive immune system. However, there are increasing data that demonstrate expression and activation of TLRs on T cells, thus providing evidence for a direct role for TLRs in the activation of an adaptive immune response. A study recently demonstrated that Pam3CSK {N-palmitoyl-S-[2,3-bis(palmitoloxy)-(2RS)-propyl]-Cys-Ser-Lys4}, a TLR2 agonist lipopeptide, activates T helper 1 (TH1) cells and induces interferon-{gamma} (IFN-{gamma}) production, even in the absence of TLR1, which differs from its mechanism of activation of APCs. Moreover, whereas Pam3CSK-stimulated IFN-{gamma} production by TH1 cells is ablated in the absence of both myeloid differentiation marker 88 (MyD88), an adaptor protein in the TLR pathway, and interleukin-1 receptor (IL-1R)–associated kinase–4 (IRAK4), the mitogen-activated protein kinases p38 and c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) are still phosphorylated. These data suggest that TLR2 activation of TH1 cells occurs through a mechanism different from that described for APCs and provides further evidence of direct TLR activation of the adaptive immune system.

*Corresponding author. E-mail, lwetzler{at}bu.edu

Citation: H. MacLeod, L. M. Wetzler, T Cell Activation by TLRs: A Role for TLRs in the Adaptive Immune Response. Sci. STKE 2007, pe48 (2007).

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