Humans are infected with a variety of acute and chronic pathogens over the course of their lives, and pathogen-driven selection has shaped the immune system of humans. The same is likely true for mice. However, laboratory mice we use for most biomedical studies are bred in ultra-hygienic environments, and are kept free of specific pathogens. We review recent studies that indicate that pathogen infections are important for the basal level of activation and the function of the immune system. Consideration of these environmental exposures of both humans and mice can potentially improve mouse models of human disease.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy