Research Topic

Epigenetic Regulation of Immunological Memory

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About this Research Topic

The adaptive nature of the humoral and cellular branches of the immune system provide the host with an ability to respond to a multitude of antigens as well as the capability to defend against various routes of exposure. Such versatility in immune-mediated defense provides a critical level of protection ...

The adaptive nature of the humoral and cellular branches of the immune system provide the host with an ability to respond to a multitude of antigens as well as the capability to defend against various routes of exposure. Such versatility in immune-mediated defense provides a critical level of protection against an array of potentially lethal pathogens. Even more impressive, once established, protective immunity towards a given pathogen can persist for the life of the host. This immunological memory is achieved by the long-lived maintenance of acquired changes to the lymphocyte effector functions, serving as the basis of vaccination, and also recently yielding significant insight into current immunotherapy strategies to treat chronic viral infections and cancer. Recent efforts to better understand the stable nature of these acquired properties have demonstrated that stability of B and T cell effector functions is coupled to maintenance of epigenetic modifications to the chromatin.
This Research Topic will address the various epigenetic modifications and machinery associated with B and T cell-fate decisions that occur during a host immune response against a foreign antigen. This Topic will serve as a forum for a colloquy of established and recent observations on epigenetic mechanisms that regulate both acquisition and maintenance of adaptive immunity and will aim to stimulate discussion regarding how to move these fundamental discoveries into future approaches to treat chronic infections and cancer.


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