CD8 memory T cells: Cross-reactivity and heterologous immunity

Liisa K. Selin, Markus Cornberg, Michael A. Brehm, Sung Kwon Kim, Claudia Calcagno, Dario Ghersi, Roberto Puzone, Franco Celada, Raymond M. Welsh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

98 Scopus citations


Virus-specific memory T cell populations demonstrate plasticity in antigen recognition and in their ability to accommodate new memory T cell populations. The degeneracy of T cell antigen recognition and the flexibility of diverse antigen-specific repertoires allow the host to respond to a multitude of pathogens while accommodating these numerous large memory pools in a finite immune system. These cross-reactive memory T cells can be employed in immune responses and mediate protective immunity, but they can also induce life-threatening immunopathology or impede transplantation tolerance and graft survival. Here we discuss examples of altered viral pathogenesis occurring as a consequence of heterologous T cell immunity and propose models for the maintenance of a dynamic pool of memory cells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)335-347
Number of pages13
JournalSeminars in Immunology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 2004
Externally publishedYes


  • Allo-reactive
  • Cross-reactive
  • Heterologous immunity
  • Memory T cell
  • Memory attrition

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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