The Carmona Lab provides a comprehensive map of virus-specific CD4+ T cells and their evolution over time, comprising six major distinct cell states that are consistently observed in acute and chronic infections in mice.
By single-cell RNA and TCR sequencing analysis, scientists of the Carmona Lab characterized the transcriptional and clonal structure of virus-specific CD4+ T cells across individuals and T cell subtypes. They found that, while in acute infections T cell composition progressively changes from effector to memory states, in persistent infections these cells acquire distinct, chronicity-associated effector states.
Their research*, published in eLife, also shows that virus-specific CD4+ T cell responses are essentially private across individuals and that most T cells differentiate into both Tfh and Th1 subtypes irrespective of their TCR sequence. Finally, it demonstrates how the CD4+ T cell map can be used as a reference to accurately interpret cell states in external single-cell datasets across tissues and disease models.
This research was conducted in collaboration with the Department of microbiology and immunology, University of Rochester, USA.
The project was supported by the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNF project 180010), the University of Rochester and the National Cancer Institute of the NIH.
* A CD4+ T cell reference map delineates subtype-specific adaptation during acute and chronic viral infections