CD8+ T cells and immunoregulatory networks in asthma

Benjamin J. Marsland, Graham Le Gros

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleResearchpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


It is well established that infection with respiratory viruses can cause acute local inflammation in humans and is a leading cause in the hospitalization of asthmatics. Less well recognized is the potential for viral infections to actually protect against the development of asthma, as are the cellular mechanisms which might underlie such protection. This review outlines the basic immunological pathways involved in atopic asthma and details the currently recognized cellular mechanisms induced by respiratory viral infections which can protect against the development of asthma. Specifically, it appears that virus infection induced memory T cells that remain in tissues, e.g. the lung and airways, can under certain circumstances create a local cytokine milieu which inhibits the development of ensuing allergic immune responses at that site. One key aspect of this immune modulation is the cytokine-dependent communication which occurs between the innate and the adaptive immune systems. The mechanistic principles underlying this form of immunomodulation should be taken into consideration when developing future forms of therapy and rational vaccine design.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)311-323
Number of pages13
JournalSpringer Seminars in Immunopathology
Issue number3-4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2004
Externally publishedYes


  • Allergic immune response
  • Asthma
  • Immunomodulation
  • Memory T cells
  • Vaccine design

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