Protection against many intracellular pathogens is provided by CD8 T cells, which are thought to need CD4 T cell help to develop into effective memory CD8 T cells. Because murine CD8 T cells do not transcribe MHC class II (MHC-II) genes, several models have proposed antigen presenting cells (APCs) as intermediaries required for CD4 T cells to deliver their help to CD8 T cells. Here, we demonstrate the presence of MHC-II molecules on activated murine CD8 T cells in vitro as well as in vivo. These MHC-II molecules are acquired via trogocytosis by CD8 T cells from their activating APCs, particularly CD11c positive dendritic cells (DCs). Transferred MHC-II molecules on activated murine CD8 T cells were functionally competent in stimulating specific indicator CD4 T cells. CD8 T cells that were "helped" in vitro and subsequently allowed to rest in vivo showed enhanced recall responses upon challenge compared to "helpless" CD8 T cells; in contrast, no differences were seen upon immediate challenge. These data indicate that direct CD8:CD4 T cell interactions may significantly contribute to help for CD8 T cells. Furthermore, this mechanism may enable CD8 T cells to communicate with different subsets of interacting CD4 T cells that could modulate immune responses.