Non-coding RNAs in CD8 T cell biology

Mol Immunol. 2020 Apr;120:67-73. doi: 10.1016/j.molimm.2020.01.023. Epub 2020 Feb 18.


CD8 T cells are among the most vigorous soldiers of the immune system that fight viral infections and cancer. CD8 T cell development, maintenance, activation and differentiation are under the tight control of multiple transcriptional and post-transcriptional networks. Over the last two decades it has become clear that non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs), which consist of microRNAs (miRNAs) and long ncRNAs (lncRNAs), have emerged as global biological regulators. While our understanding of the function of specific miRNAs has increased since the discovery of RNA interference, it is still very limited, and the field of lncRNAs is just starting to blossom. Here we will summarize our knowledge on the role of ncRNAs in CD8 T cell biology, including differentiation into memory and exhausted cells.

Keywords: CTL; Effector; Exhaustion; Memory; Naïve; lncRNA; miRNA.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes / cytology
  • CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes / immunology*
  • Cell Differentiation / genetics
  • Cell Differentiation / immunology
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Humans
  • Immunologic Memory / genetics
  • Lymphocyte Activation / genetics
  • Lymphocyte Activation / immunology
  • Mice
  • MicroRNAs / genetics
  • MicroRNAs / immunology
  • RNA Interference
  • RNA, Long Noncoding / genetics
  • RNA, Long Noncoding / immunology
  • RNA, Untranslated / genetics*
  • RNA, Untranslated / immunology


  • MicroRNAs
  • RNA, Long Noncoding
  • RNA, Untranslated