Molecular Interactions in T-Cell Mediated Cytotoxicity: Discrimination between the Binding and Lethal Hit Stages of Cytolysis

  • Benjamin Bonavida
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 146)


The role of cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTL) in immunity has been well documented. The exact mechanism, however, by which a CTL kills a corresponding target cell is not known. Several studies have investigated the mechanism of lysis using different probes and these have been reviewed extensively (1–4). These studies showed that T-cell-mediated cytotoxicity (CMC) can be resolved into at least three distinct steps, namely recognition or binding, programming for lysis or the lethal hit, and target cell disintegration in the so-called lymphocyte-independent phase. These studies have therefore suggested that multiple cell-cell interactions between effector cell (EC) and target cell (TC) may be involved in cytolysis.


Target Cell Conjugate Formation Target Cell Lysis Recognition Step Cytolytic Process 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1982

Authors and Affiliations

  • Benjamin Bonavida
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Microbiology and ImmunologyUCLA School of Medicine, University of CaliforniaLos AngelesUSA

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