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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Allorecognition and T cell repertoire selection in severe combined immunodeficiency lacking HLA class II antigens.

In order to elucidate the role of HLA class II molecules in generation of self-nonself discrimination of human T cells, we have analyzed T cell functions in an HLA class II-negative severe combined immunodeficiency patient. Patient PBL expressed no HLA-DR, -DQ, and -DP antigens as judged by immunofluorescence using mAb, and failed to elicit MLR responses from unrelated controls. Patient PBL contained mature T cells (CD3+ TCR alpha beta+) of the CD4 and CD8 subset, showing an apparently normal TCR diversity, as judged by use of anti-V beta 5, -V beta 6, -V beta 8, -V beta 12, and -V alpha 2 mAb. Patient PBL proliferated in response to anti-TCR/CD3 mAb and PHA, but not against recall Ag, despite immunization, and mounted proliferative, but not cytotoxic, responses against allogeneic cells. To find out whether the MLR responses were a consequence of self-nonself discrimination, the patient HLA-DR and -DQ genotype was determined using sequence specific oligonucleotide probes, revealing DRB1*0401 DQB1*0301 alleles, and MLR were set up against a panel of HLA-DR4 DQw3 stimulators matched or mismatched for DRB1*0401 DQB1*0301. Results showed no MLR against DRB1*0401 DQB1*0301 stimulators, but significant responses against stimulators expressing DRB1*0408 and/or DQB1*0302 alleles. Moreover, the DRB1*0401 DQB1*0301 APC reconstituted proliferation of patient PBL against PPD; this response was completely blocked by an anti-IL-2R ( p55) mAb and partially also by anti-HLA-DR and -DQ mAb, indicating recognition of these molecules as restriction element presenting Ag--i.e., as self--by patient T cells. In conclusion, the novel demonstration of self-nonself discrimination by T cells from an HLA class II-negative SCID patient suggests that it may not be absolutely dependent on regular HLA class II expression within the differentiation environment in humans.[1]


  1. Allorecognition and T cell repertoire selection in severe combined immunodeficiency lacking HLA class II antigens. Knobloch, C., Ballas, M., Wölpl, A., Friedrich, W. Transplantation (1992) [Pubmed]
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