T-Cell Immunity Against Cytomegalovirus in Older Adults

Heterogeneity, Targeting Broad CMV Epitopes, and Longitudinal Studies
  • Xiang Ding
  • Joseph B. Margolick
  • Sean X. Leng
Living reference work entry


Human cytomegalovirus (CMV) is a large DNA virus known to persist in some immunocompetent individuals after primary infection, establishing a chronic infection. Chronic CMV infection is highly prevalent by positive anti-CMV IgG serology in the general older adult population and in several chronic conditions including HIV infection. As discussed elsewhere in this handbook, a large number of studies have shown expansion of T cells specific to CMV pp65 or immediate early 1 (IE1) epitopes in some seropositive older adults, suggesting chronic CMV infection as a major driving force in T-cell immunosenescence with significant adverse impact on the health of older adults. However, most of these studies are cross-sectional, and CMV-seropositive older adult population is likely heterogeneous. This chapter will address this heterogeneity and provide supportive evidence for PCR-based assays to detect CMV viral DNA in the peripheral blood monocytes as novel tools for diagnostic evaluation of chronic CMV infection in older adults. It will also describe CD4+ and CD8+ T-cell responses to broad CMV epitopes beyond pp65 or IE1 emphasizing the importance of such comprehensive evaluation. Finally, it will present emerging longitudinal data for chronic CMV infection and its impact on T-cell immunity, emphasizing the need for more in-depth longitudinal studies with larger sample size, frequent sampling, and longer follow-up.


Cytomegalovirus T-cell immunity Aging Heterogeneity longitudinal 



This work was supported in part by an NIH grant R01AI108907 and R21-AG-043874 and funding from the Milstein Medical Asian American Partnership (MMAAP) Foundation ( [to Dr. Sean X. Leng], NIH grant UO1-AI-35042 [to Dr. Joseph B Margolick], and additional supplemental funding from the National Cancer Institute [to the MACS].


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Xiang Ding
    • 1
    • 3
  • Joseph B. Margolick
    • 2
  • Sean X. Leng
    • 3
  1. 1.The Center of Gerontology and Geriatrics, West China HospitalSichuan UniversitySichuan ProvinceChina
  2. 2.Department of Molecular Microbiology and ImmunologyJohns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public HealthBaltimoreUSA
  3. 3.Division of Geriatric Medicine and Gerontology and Center on Aging and Health, Department of MedicineJohns Hopkins University School of MedicineBaltimoreUSA

Section editors and affiliations

  • Tamas Fulop
    • 1
  1. 1.Research Center on Aging, Department of Medicine, Immunology Graduate Programme, Faculty of MedicineUniversity of SherbrookeSherbrookeCanada

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