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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter April 4, 2014

Natural killer cell in the developing life

  • Yen-Chang Lee and Syh-Jae Lin EMAIL logo


Natural killer (NK) cells that provide first-line innate immune reactions against virus-infected and tumor cells have different roles in different body sites and in different stages. From the beginning of life, NK cells participate in many aspects of development, especially in a successful pregnancy and a healthy neonatal stage. This article reviews recent advances regarding the role of NK cells in implantation, placentation and immune tolerance during pregnancy as well as in the neonatal immune defense. The interactions between NK cells and other immune cells in each developmental stage are discussed.

Corresponding author: Dr. Syh-Jae Lin, Division of Asthma, Allergy, and Rheumatology Department of Pediatrics, Chang Gung Children’s Hospital, College of Medicine, Chang Gung University, Taoyuan, Taiwan, E-mail: ;


This article was supported in part by grants from the National Science Council of Republic of China (NSC98-2314-B-182-003-MY3 and NSC97-2314-B-182-017) and Chang Gung Memorial Hospital (CMRPD160332, CMRPG460082 and CMRPG460083).


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The authors stated that there are no conflicts of interest regarding the publication of this article.

Received: 2013-9-6
Accepted: 2014-3-17
Published Online: 2014-4-4
Published in Print: 2015-1-1

©2015 by De Gruyter

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