T Cell Recognition of Major Histocompatibility Complex Antigens in HLA Class II Transgenic Mice
The development of the self-tolerant/foreign antigen reactive immune system requires the selection of regulatory T helper cells such that those with specificity for self determinants are deleted or inactivated. In contrast, cells with specificity for foreign antigens mature and circulate in the periphery until activated (figure 1). A peculiar feature of these latter cells, however, is their requirement for simultaneous recognition of gene products encoded in the class II region of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC). The specificity of this recognition is determined by the particular forms of MHC antigens which are expressed in the thymus. Thus, thymic MHC molecules participate both in the negative selection of autoreactive T cells, as demonstrated by analyses of T cells bearing V beta 17a gene products (Kappler et al., 1987), and in the positive selection of MHC restricted antigen reactive T cells, as demonstrated in bone marrow chimera and thymus graft experiments (von Bohemer et al., 1975; Fink and Bevan, 1978) and, more recently, in experiments with T cell receptor (TCR) transgenic mice (Kisielow et al., 1988). Together, these processes generate a repertoire of mature T cells with receptors with exquisite specificity for MHC and antigen.
KeywordsMajor Histocompatibility Complex Major Histocompatibility Complex Class Major Histocompatibility Complex Molecule Cell Repertoire Beta Chain
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