Direct ex vivo analysis of hepatitis B virus-specific CD8(+) T cells associated with the control of infection.
BACKGROUND and AIMS: Cytotoxic T cells have been suggested to be responsible for lysis of hepatitis B virus (HBV)-infected hepatocytes and control of virus infection. The frequency, kinetics, phenotype, and capacity for clonal expansion of circulating HBV-specific CD8 cells were analyzed directly in patients with acute HBV infection to clarify their pathogenetic role. METHODS: Three HLA-A2 peptide tetramers able to visualize HBV core, envelope, and polymerase epitope-specific cytotoxic T lymp...Expand abstract
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