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Trends Immunol. 2003 Mar;24(3):132-5.

Quantitative constraints on the scope of negative selection.

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  • 1Ecology & Evolution, ETH Zürich, ETH Zentrum NW, 8092 Zürich, Switzerland. mueller@eco.umnw.ethz.ch

Abstract

Maturing T cells with a high affinity for self-antigens presented in the thymus are deleted in the process of negative selection. Although the expression of various "tissue-specific" antigens has been described in the thymus, it is still controversial what fraction of all self-antigens induces tolerance by this mechanism. We demonstrate that the limited duration of the negative selection phase imposes a constraint on the number of self-peptides that can be reliably selected against. The analysis supports the theory that negative selection is confined to the subset of peptides produced by dendritic cells.

PMID:
12615208
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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