This review describes the fish immune system, focusing on specific cell- mediated immunity. Specific in vivo cell-mediated immune responses have been shown by allograft rejection, graft-versus-host reaction (GVHR) and delayed hypersensitivity reaction (DTH). Recent in vitro studies also showed specific cell-mediated cytotoxicity against allogeneic target cells. These in vivo and in vitro experiments strongly suggest the presence of cytotoxic T cells in fishes. Also described are current studies on shark and trout MHC class I polymorphism and function that demonstrate strong similarities between fish and mammals.
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