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For vaccines, CD4 + T cells can spell trouble The ideal vaccine elicits immune memory—either antibodies or memory T cells—to protect the host from subsequent infections. T cell–mediated immunity requires both helper CD4 + T cells and cytotoxic CD8 + T cells to kill virus-infected cells. But what happens when a vaccine only elicits CD4 + memory T cells? Penaloza-MacMaster et al. probed this question by giving mice a vaccine that generated only memory CD4 + T cells against lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus (LCMV). Instead of protecting mice against chronic LCMV, vaccinated mice developed massive inflammation and died. Virus-specific CD8 + T cells or antibodies protected mice from the pathology. These results may have implications for vaccines against chronic viruses such as HIV. Science , this issue p. 278

Original publication




Journal article




American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)

Publication Date





278 - 282