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Clin Exp Immunol. 1994 Sep;97(3):392-5.

T cell differentiation and generation of the antigen-specific T cell repertoire in man: observations in MHC class II deficiency.

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Institute of Immunology, University of Vienna, Austria.


The circulating T cell pool of an MHC class II-deficient patient was shown to lack the MHC class II-specific T cell functions. This was demonstrated by the absence of MHC class II-specific alloreactive T cells and a substantially decreased number of circulating CD4+ lymphocytes. The patient's T cells did respond to an allostimulus, although the restriction pattern of this reaction remains speculative. The function and distribution of peripheral T cell subsets from the patient resemble findings in MHC class II-deficient mice, which also lack interaction of T cell precursors with MHC class II-bearing accessory cells during thymic differentiation. Our data support the concept that T cell differentiation in humans is similar, and that the human MHC-restricted T cell repertoire depends on prior interaction of T cell precursors with self MHC.

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