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T-cell-mediated Cytotoxicity

  • As described more fully in Cell-mediated Immunity, fully differentiated, effector Cytotoxic CD8+ T-cells can kill host cells that display peptide:MHC I complexes which the T-cell's T-cell Receptor recognizes. In the normal case, this effector function is used to destroy cells which carry microbial infections in their cytosol. However, if self-reactive T-cells are not properly eliminated during T-cell Development then this effector function may inappropriately target normal host cells displaying host antigens. Although T-cell-mediated cytotoxicity likely plays a contributing role in certain cases of immune-mediated injury, it does not appear to play a dominant role in any particular disease.