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Clin Immunol Immunopathol. 1994 Dec;73(3):283-9.

The T cell repertoire against cryptic self determinants and its involvement in autoimmunity and cancer.

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Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics, University of California, Los Angeles 90024-1489.


Developing T cells potentially directed against cryptic self determinants escape tolerance induction in the thymus and thereby enrich the T cell repertoire. Cryptic self peptides become expressed at inflammatory tissue sites which can lead to engagement of this repertoire, leading to induction and/or perpetuation of autoimmune reactivity. On the other hand, expression of cryptic self determinants on tumor cells can be useful in generating effective anti-tumor immunity. This self-directed T cell repertoire can also be activated silently to induce memory and participate unexpectedly in responses to foreign antigens and is responsible for molecular mimicry. Finally, peptides containing cryptic determinants can be utilized for peptide-based immunotherapy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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