NK cells and their receptors

Wayne M. Yokoyama*, Joan K. Riley

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Despite early reports that natural killer (NK) cells are non-specific or have non-major histocompatibility complex (MHC)-restricted killing, it is now clear that NK cells express a panoply of receptors with defined specificity for ligands expressed on their cellular targets. The roles of these receptors in terms of physiological NK cell effector functions, such as cytotoxicity and cytokine production, are beginning to be unravelled. In as much as NK cells accumulate in the uterus, an appreciation of NK cell receptor specificities and their physiological functions should provide valuable clues to the role of NK cells in the uterus and during pregnancy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)173-191
Number of pages19
JournalReproductive biomedicine online
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Activation
  • Inhibition
  • Major histocompatibility complex
  • NK cell receptors
  • Selective expression
  • Uterus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Developmental Biology


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