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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1989 Dec;86(23):9422-6.

Allelic sequence variations in the hypervariable region of a T-cell receptor beta chain: correlation with restriction fragment length polymorphism in human families and populations.

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Laboratory of Immunogenetics, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Bethesda, MD 20892.


Direct sequence analysis of the human T-cell antigen receptor (TCR) V beta 1 variable gene identified a single base-pair allelic variation (C/G) located within the coding region. This change results in substitution of a histidine (CAC) for a glutamine (CAG) at position 48 of the TCR beta chain, a position predicted to be in the TCR antigen binding site. The V beta 1 polymorphism was found by DNA sequence analysis of V beta 1 genes from seven unrelated individuals; V beta 1 genes were amplified by the polymerase chain reaction, the amplified fragments were cloned into M13 phage vectors, and sequences were determined. To determine the inheritance patterns of the V beta 1 substitution and to test correlation with V beta 1 restriction fragment length polymorphism detected with Pvu II and Taq I, allele-specific oligonucleotides were constructed and used to characterize amplified DNA samples. Seventy unrelated individuals and six families were tested for both restriction fragment length polymorphism and for the V beta 1 substitution. The correlation was also tested using amplified, size-selected, Pvu II- and Taq I-digested DNA samples from heterozygotes. Pvu II allele 1 (61/70) and Taq I allele 1 (66/70) were found to be correlated with the substitution giving rise to a histidine at position 48. Because there are exceptions to the correlation, the use of specific probes to characterize allelic forms of TCR variable genes will provide important tools for studies of basic TCR genetics and disease associations.

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