Antigen degradation by macrophages as an obligatory step in the presentation of antigen to T lymphocytes

  • Giampietro Corradin
  • Robert W. Chesnut
  • Howard M. Grey


Evidence is presented which supports the hypothesis of protein degradation taking place in macrophages as a part of the presentation of antigen to T lymphocytes. It is postulated that the ability of T cells to recognize both native and denatured forms of the same protein is dependent upon degradation of both forms of the protein to yield the same peptides and thus results in the stimulation of identical subsets of T cells. The occasional observation of a lack of cross-reactivity could result if the native antigen is particularly resistant to the denaturing conditions found within macrophages.


Antigen processing Ir genes Macrophages Native vs. denatured antigen T lymphocytes 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1979

Authors and Affiliations

  • Giampietro Corradin
    • 1
  • Robert W. Chesnut
    • 2
  • Howard M. Grey
    • 2
  1. 1.Institut de BiochimieUniversité de LausanneEpalingesSwitzerland
  2. 2.National Jewish Hospital and Research CenterDenver

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