The regulatory role of Vα14 NKT cells in innate and acquired immune response

Masaru Taniguchi, Michishige Harada, Satoshi Kojo, Toshinori Nakayama, Hiroshi Wakao

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

613 Citations (Scopus)


A novel lymphocyte lineage, Vα14 natural killer T (NKT) cells, is now well established as distinct from conventional αβ T cells. Vα14 NKT cells express a single invariant Vα14 antigen receptor that is essential for their development. Successful identification of a specific ligand, α-galactosylceramide(α-GalCer), and the establishment of gene-manipulated mice with selective loss of Vα14 NKT cells helped elucidate the remarkable functional diversity of Vα14 NKT cells in various immune responses such as host defense by mediating anti-nonself innate immune reaction, homeostatic regulation of anti-self responses, and antitumor immunity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)483-513
Number of pages31
JournalAnnual Review of Immunology
Publication statusPublished - 2003
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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