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Papers of the Week

Papers: 19 Jun 2021 - 25 Jun 2021

2021 Jun 21

Int Rev Immunol

T cell transgressions: tales of T cell form and function in diverse disease states.


Harris KM, Clements MA, Kwilasz AJ, Watkins LR
Int Rev Immunol. 2021 Jun 21:1-42.
PMID: 34152881.


Insights into T cell form, function, and dysfunction are rapidly evolving. T cells have remarkably varied effector functions including protecting the host from infection, activating cells of the innate immune system, releasing cytokines and chemokines, and heavily contributing to immunological memory. Under healthy conditions, T cells orchestrate a finely tuned attack on invading pathogens while minimizing damage to the host. The dark side of T cells is that they also exhibit autoreactivity and inflict harm to host cells, creating autoimmunity. The mechanisms of T cell autoreactivity are complex and dynamic. Emerging research is elucidating the mechanisms leading T cells to become autoreactive and how such responses cause or contribute to diverse disease states, both peripherally and within the central nervous system. This review provides foundational information on T cell development, differentiation, and functions. Key T cell subtypes, cytokines that create their effector roles, and sex differences are highlighted. Pathological T cell contributions to diverse peripheral and central disease states, arising from errors in reactivity, are highlighted, with a focus on multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, neuropathic pain, and type 1 diabetes.