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We compared cytomegalovirus (CMV)-specific interferon-gamma (IFN-gamma), interleukin 2 (IL-2), and CD154 CD4(+) T cell responses of infants to those from chronically infected adults and from children aged 4-5 years. Magnitudes of the responses were similar, although coexpression of IFN-gamma plus CD154 occurred more than coexpression of IFN-gamma plus IL-2 or IL-2 plus CD154. Responses remained constant during infancy, although the proportion of IFN-gamma-producing cells increased from infancy to adulthood. Most responding cells in infants were undifferentiated (i.e., CD27(+)CD28(+)), although IFN-gamma-producing cells were disproportionately CD27(-). By 12 months after diagnosis, viremia was rarely detectable, indicating that CMV was controlled despite the slow development of CMV-specific CD4(+) T cell responses.

Original publication




Journal article


J Infect Dis

Publication Date





658 - 662


Adult, CD4-Positive T-Lymphocytes, CD40 Ligand, Child, Preschool, Cytomegalovirus, Cytomegalovirus Infections, Female, Gambia, Humans, Infant, Interferon-gamma, Interleukin-2, Leukocytes, Mononuclear, Mothers, Prospective Studies, T-Lymphocyte Subsets, Viral Load