The diverse functions of CD1d-restricted NKT cells and their potential for immunotherapy

Karl O.A. Yu, Steven A. Porcelli

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

120 Scopus citations


CD1d-restricted NKT cells have been identified as an important component of the immune system that have the capacity both to augment beneficial host immunity and to prevent harmful autoimmunity. These cells have the ability to produce a wide variety of cytokines, including both proinflammatory and antiinflammatory cytokines that can have multiple different effects on the outcome of immune reactions. The discovery that these T cells are activated by specific recognition of glycolipids in the glycosylceramide family has led to new approaches to manipulate the pleiotropic functions of these cells. Here, we review the multiple activities that have been attributed to NKT cells in a variety of different disease models, and the current state of our understanding of the mechanisms that control the functional outcome of NKT cell activation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)42-55
Number of pages14
JournalImmunology Letters
Issue number1
StatePublished - Aug 15 2005


  • CD1
  • Cytokines
  • Glycolipid
  • NKT cell

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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