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Skin γδ T-cell functions in homeostasis and wound healing


Wendy L. Havran
Department of Immunology, IMM-8
The Scripps Research Institute
10550 North Torrey Pines Road
La Jolla, CA 92037, USA
Tel.: 858-784-2742
Fax: 858-784-8179


Summary:  There is a resident population of T cells found in murine skin that expresses an invariant Vγ3Vδ1 T-cell receptor (TCR), and these cells are significantly different from lymphoid γδ T cells and αβ T cells in terms of ontogeny, tissue tropism, and antigen receptor diversity. These dendritic epidermal T cells are derived from fetal thymic precursor cells, are in constant contact with neighboring epidermal cells, and express a monoclonal γδTCR only found in the skin. Skin γδ T cells have been shown to play unique roles in tissue homeostasis and during tissue repair through local secretion of distinct growth factors including keratinocyte growth factors and insulin-like growth factor-1. In this review, we discuss evidence supporting a role for cross talk between skin γδ T cells and keratinocytes that contributes to the maintenance of normal skin and wound healing.