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Methods Mol Biol. 2019;2020:153-164. doi: 10.1007/978-1-4939-9591-2_11.

The Use of pMHCII Tetramer Technology for the Identification and Characterization of CD4+ T Cells.

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Benaroya Research Institute at Virginia Mason, Seattle, WA, USA.


Understanding the mechanism underlying allergic disease is dependent upon definition of the heterogeneity and complexity of the cellular immune response toward allergens both in the context of disease and clinical intervention. Among all components of the immune system, CD4+ T cells play a key role in the orchestration of immune response toward allergen and have become a dynamic area of research. Because of their unique ability to identify antigen-specific CD4+ T cells irrespective of functional outputs, fluorescently labeled peptide-MHC class II (pMHCII) tetramers in combination with multiparameter flow cytometry have now provided an unprecedented opportunity to track and subsequently quantify and characterize rare allergen-specific CD4+ T cells at single-cell level. This chapter describes methods to use pMHCII tetramer technology for the direct visualization and characterization of antigen-specific CD4+ T cells in the allergy context.


Allergen-specific CD4+ T cells; Magnetic cell enrichment; pMHCII tetramer

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