Background: Persistent viruses such as murine cytomegalovirus (MCMV) and adenovirus-based vaccines induce strong, sustained CD8 + T-cell responses, described as memory "inflation". These retain functionality, home to peripheral organs and are associated with a distinct transcriptional program. Methods: To further define the nature of the transcriptional mechanisms underpinning memory inflation at different sites we used single-cell RNA sequencing of tetramer-sorted cells from MCMV-infected mice, analyzing transcriptional networks in virus-specific populations in the spleen and gut intra-epithelial lymphocytes (IEL). Results: We provide a transcriptional map of T-cell memory and define a module of gene expression, which distinguishes memory inflation in spleen from resident memory T-cells (T RM) in the gut. Conclusions: These data indicate that CD8 + T-cell memory in the gut epithelium induced by persistent viruses and vaccines has a distinct quality from both conventional memory and "inflationary" memory which may be relevant to protection against mucosal infections.
Wellcome open research
Peter Medawar Building for Pathogen Research, Nuffield Department of Medicine, University of Oxford, Oxford, Oxfordshire, OX13SY, UK.