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Eur J Immunol. 1991 Aug;21(8):1963-6.

Clonal expansion precedes anergy and death of V beta 8+ peripheral T cells responding to staphylococcal enterotoxin B in vivo.

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Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research, Lausanne Branch, Epalinges, Switzerland.


Staphylococcal enterotoxin B (SEB) selectively stimulates T cells bearing T cell receptor V beta 8 domains and hence provides a useful model to study immunity and tolerance in vivo. We show here that V beta 8+ T cells in both CD4+ and CD8+ subsets expand dramatically (fivefold) in lymphoid tissues of mice 2-4 days following injection with SEB. This initial clonal expansion, which is accompanied by a transient hyper-reactivity to SEB, is followed by a rapid decrease in V beta 8+ cells and a concomitant induction of specific non-responsiveness which persists for at least 30 days. Selective death of V beta 8+ cells occurs during this latter phase. Taken together, our data indicate that clonal expansion, anergy and death can occur as sequential stages of an immune response in vivo.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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