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Role of functional avidity in HIV-specific memory CD8 T cell effector functions

CD8+ T cells provide protective antiviral defense in HIV-1 infection. Although studies demonstrate which effector functions are employed, knowledge of the underlying mechanisms is lacking and inconclusive. Here, we investigate the functional avidity of CD8+ T cells, based on cytokine secretion and proliferation, to compare the effective antigen concentration required to induce each response. Our preliminary data suggests that the functional avidity of CD8+ T cells differs based on the effector function used for measurement, indicating that the requirements for activation differ within a single CD8+ profile. We also found that elite controllers, individuals who control the virus without antiretroviral treatment, require lower avidity interactions than chronic progressors.

These and future results will help to determine optimal doses of antigens for the induction of effective responses in new vaccine formulations.

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Correspondence to Tiffany Lemon.

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This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Lemon, T., Alvino, D., Ndhlovu, Z. et al. Role of functional avidity in HIV-specific memory CD8 T cell effector functions. Retrovirology 9 (Suppl 1), P26 (2012).

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