T Cell Receptor Signaling Kinetics Takes the Stage

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Sci. Signal.  21 Dec 2010:
Vol. 3, Issue 153, pp. pe50
DOI: 10.1126/scisignal.3153pe50

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It has been long surmised that the strength of stimulation of the T cell receptor (TCR) determines the robustness of TCR-mediated signaling and the magnitude of a T cell response. However, it is becoming evident that the signal from the TCR develops over time to approach its steady-state, affinity-determined maximal extent and that variations in this time have a substantial effect on the responsiveness of T cells. Here, I discuss data that show that the kinetics of signal propagation in various segments of the TCR signaling network can influence the spatiotemporal regulation of the effector functions of T cells and the quality of the T cell response.

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