Gamma/Delta T cells and their role in protection against malariaMore about Open Access at the Crick
Whether and how γδT cells play a protective role in immunity against infection remain open questions. γδT cells expand in patients and mice infected with spp, and cytokine production and cytotoxic responses against blood-stage parasites are observed . Their expansion is associated with protective immunity induced by irradiated sporozoite immunization, and depletion of γδT cells in some mouse models of malaria excacerbates blood-stage infections. It is now clear that these cells can have many different functions, and data are emerging suggesting that in addition to having direct parasitocidal effects, they can regulate other immune cells during infections. Here we review some of the historic and more recent data on γδT cells, and in light of the new information on their potential protective roles we suggest that it is a good time to re-evaluate their activation requirements, specificity and function during malaria.