Chemokines as regulators of T cell differentiation

Nat Immunol. 2001 Feb;2(2):102-7. doi: 10.1038/84205.


Chemokines play well established roles as attractants of naïve and effector T cells. New studies indicate that chemokines also have roles in regulating T cell differentiation. Blocking Gi protein-coupled receptor signaling by pertussis toxin as well as deficiencies in G alpha 12, chemokine receptor 2 (CCR2), CCR5, chemokine ligand 2 (CCL2, also known as monocyte chemoattractant protein 1, or MCP-1), CCL3 (macrophage inflammatory protein 1 alpha, or MIP-1 alpha) and CCL5 (RANTES) have all been found to have effects on the magnitude and cytokine polarity of the T cell response. Here we focus on findings in the CCL2-CCR2 and CCL3-CCR5 ligand-receptor systems. The roles of these molecules in regulating T cell fate include possible indirect effects on antigen-presenting cells and direct effects on differentiating T cells. Models to account for the action of chemokines and G protein-coupled receptor signals in regulating T cell differentiation are discussed.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Differentiation / immunology
  • Chemokines / immunology*
  • GTP-Binding Protein alpha Subunits, Gi-Go / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Interleukin-12 / biosynthesis
  • Ligands
  • Models, Biological
  • Receptors, CCR1
  • Receptors, CCR2
  • Receptors, CCR5 / immunology
  • Receptors, CCR5 / metabolism
  • Receptors, Chemokine / immunology
  • Receptors, Chemokine / metabolism
  • Signal Transduction
  • T-Lymphocytes / cytology*
  • T-Lymphocytes / immunology*
  • T-Lymphocytes / metabolism


  • CCR1 protein, human
  • CCR2 protein, human
  • Chemokines
  • Ligands
  • Receptors, CCR1
  • Receptors, CCR2
  • Receptors, CCR5
  • Receptors, Chemokine
  • Interleukin-12
  • GTP-Binding Protein alpha Subunits, Gi-Go