Author(s): Grakoui A, Shoukry NH, Woollard DJ, Han JH, Hanson HL,
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Abstract Spontaneous resolution of hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection in humans usually affords long-term immunity to persistent viremia and associated liver diseases. Here, we report that memory CD4+ Tcells are essential for this protection. Antibody-mediated depletion of CD4+ Tcells before reinfection of two immune chimpanzees resulted in persistent, low-level viremia despite functional intra-hepatic memory CD8+ Tcell responses. Incomplete control of HCV replication by memory CD8+ Tcells in the absence of adequate CD4+ Tcell help was associated with emergence of viral escape mutations in class I major histocompatibility complex-restricted epitopes and failure to resolve HCV infection.
This article was published in Science
and referenced in Journal of Genetic Syndromes & Gene Therapy