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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Cutting edge: NKG2ChiCD57+ NK cells respond specifically to acute infection with cytomegalovirus and not epstein-barr virus

  • Author(s): Hendricks, DW
  • Balfour, HH
  • Dunmire, SK
  • Schmeling, DO
  • Hogquist, KA
  • Lanier, LL
  • et al.

CMV induces the expansion of a unique subset of human NK cells expressing high levels of the activating CD94-NKG2C receptor that persist after control of the infection. We investigated whether this subset is CMV specific or is also responsive to acute infection with EBV. We describe a longitudinal study of CMV2 and CMV+ students who were acutely infected with EBV. The NKG2Chi NK subset was not expanded by EBV infection. However, EBV infection caused a decrease in the absolute number of immature CD56bright CD162 NK cells in the blood and, in CMV+ individuals, induced an increased frequency of mature CD56dim NKG2A+CD57+ NK cells in the blood that persisted into latency. These results provide further evidence that NKG2C+ NK cells are CMV specific and suggest that EBV infection alters the repertoire of NK cells in the blood. Copyright © 2014 by The American Association of Immunologists, Inc.

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