IL-21 is required for CD4 memory formation in response to viral infection.

Published online

Journal Article

IL-21 has been shown to play an important role in the CD8 T cell response during acute and chronic viral infections. However, the role of IL-21 signaling in the CD4 T cell response to viral infection remains incompletely defined. In a model of infection with vaccinia virus, we show that intrinsic IL-21 signaling on CD4 T cells was critical for the formation of memory CD4 T cells in vivo. We further reveal that IL-21 promoted CD4 T cell survival in a mechanism dependent on activation of the STAT1 and STAT3 signaling pathways. In addition, the activation of Akt is also required for IL-21-dependent survival of CD4 T cells in vivo. These results identify a critical role for intrinsic IL-21 signaling in CD4 T cell survival and memory formation in response to viral infection in vivo and may provide insights into the design of effective vaccine strategies.

Full Text

Cited Authors

  • Yuan, Y; Yang, Y; Huang, X

Published Date

  • April 6, 2017

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 2 / 7

Start / End Page

  • e90652 -

PubMed ID

  • 28405614

Pubmed Central ID

  • 28405614

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 2379-3708

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1172/jci.insight.90652


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States