Alternative splicing and hypermutation of a nonproductively rearranged TCR α-chain in a T cell hybridoma

Brendan Marshall, Ruth Schulz, Min Zhou, Andrew Mellor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Scopus citations


Like Ig genes, TCR genes are formed by somatic rearrangements of noncontiguous genomic V, J, and C regions. Unlike Ig genes, somatic hypermutation of TCR V regions is an infrequent event. We describe the occurrence of spontaneous hypermutation in a nonproductively rearranged TCR α-chain gene in a clonal T cell hybridoma that had lost its productively rearranged α-chain. The mutating hybridoma was eventually supplanted in culture by a nonmutating variant that had restored an open reading frame in the nonproductively rearranged TCR α-chain through the use of cryptic splice sites in the Vα region. Evidence is presented for the presence of cDNA reverse transcripts of the TCR α-chain within the hybridoma, suggesting a role for reverse transcriptase in the generation of mutations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)871-877
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Immunology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jan 15 1999


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology

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