NKT Cells: Bridging Innate and Adaptive Immunity
Invariant natural killer T-cells (iNKTs) are an innate T-cell subset unique in their possession of an invariant T-cell Receptor (TCR) and nonclassical antigen presentation mechanism through the CD1d molecule. iNKTs recognize glycolipids presented on the nonpolymorphic major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I-like CD1d molecule, unlike conventional T-cells which recognize peptides presented on MHC class I/II molecules. iNKTs can rapidly produce multiple cytokines in response to activation. This rapid cytokine production allows iNKTs to be powerful modulators of the immune response. iNKTs can produce T-helper type 1 (Th1), Th2, and Th17 cytokines depending on stimulus strength, type of stimulation, iNKT subset, and presenting cell type. As a result, iNKTs are able to affect and modulate immune responses to a variety of diseases, both chronic and infectious – including a potentially important role in controlling human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection. The ability of...
KeywordsHuman Immunodeficiency Virus Major Histocompatibility Complex Class Human Immunodeficiency Virus Infection Simian Immunodeficiency Virus iNKT Cell
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