Recirculating virgin CD4+ T cells spend their life migrating between the T zones of secondary lymphoid tissues where they screen the surface of interdigitating dendritic cells. T-cell priming starts when processed peptides or superantigen associated with class II MHC molecules are recognised. Those primed T cells that remain within the lymphoid tissue move to the outer T zone, where they interact with B cells that have taken up and processed antigen. Cognate interaction between these cells initiates immunoglobulin (Ig) class switch-recombination and proliferation of both B and T cells; much of this growth occurs outside the T zones B cells migrate to follicles, where they form germinal centres, and to extrafollicular sites of B-cell growth, where they differentiate into mainly short-lived plasma cells. T cells do not move to the extrafollicular foci, but to the follicles; there they proliferate and are subsequently involved in the selection of B cells that have mutated their Ig variable-region genes. During primary antibody responses T-cell proliferation in follicles produces many times the peak number of T cells found in that site: a substantial proportion of the CD4+ memory T-cell pool may originate from growth in follicles.