The Memory T Cell Response to West Nile Virus in Symptomatic Humans following Natural Infection Is Not Influenced by Age and Is Dominated by a Restricted Set of CD8+ T Cell Epitopes Journal Articles uri icon

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  • Abstract We examined the West Nile virus (WNV)-specific T cell response in a cohort of 52 patients with symptomatic WNV infections, including neuroinvasive and non-invasive disease. Although all virus proteins were shown to contain T cell epitopes, certain proteins, such as E, were more commonly targeted by the T cell response. Most patients exhibited reactivity toward 3–4 individual WNV peptides; however, several patients exhibited reactivity toward >10 individual peptides. The relative hierarchy of T cell reactivities in all patients showed a fixed pattern that was sustained throughout the 12-mo period of the current study. Surprisingly, we did not observe any relationship between age and either the breadth or magnitude of the T cell response following infection. We also did not observe a relationship between disease severity and either the breadth or magnitude of the T cell response. The T cell epitopes were distributed in a non-random fashion across the viral polyprotein and a limited number of epitopes appeared to dominate the CD8+ T cell response within our cohort. These data provide important new insight into the T cell response against WNV in humans.


  • Parsons, Robin
  • Lelic, Alina
  • Hayes, Lisa
  • Carter, Alexandra
  • Marshall, Laura
  • Evelegh, Carole
  • Drebot, Michael
  • Andonova, Maya
  • McMurtrey, Curtis
  • Hildebrand, William
  • Loeb, Mark
  • Bramson, Jonathan

publication date

  • July 15, 2008