Genetic approaches to the study of cytokine regulation of mucosal immunity

Ramsay, Alistair J.
December 1995
Immunology & Cell Biology;Dec1995, Vol. 73 Issue 6, p484
Academic Journal
Efforts to design effective mucosal vaccines have been hampered by an incomplete understanding of factors controlling the development of mucosal immunity. It is now clear, however, that T cell-derived cytokines play a major role. Recent developments in 'gene knockout' technology have allowed the generation of strains of mice in which particular genes have been inactivated. The availability of mice rendered deficient for production of Th2 cytokines has facilitated studies of the induction and development of mucosal immune responses in the absence of these factors. We have used several genetic approaches, including cytokine- deficient mice and recombinant vectors constructed to express genes for a range of different cytokines to demonstrate the importance of these factors in the mucosa. Such genetic approaches appear to represent powerful tools for in vivo studies of the influence of cytokines in mucosal immunoregulation.


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