Human T-helper lymphocyte clones specific for hepatitis B virus surface antigen (HBsAg) proliferate on stimulation with HBsAg in vitro. Antibodies specific for HBsAg, but no other antibodies, augment this proliferative response. In the presence of antibodies to HBsAg, the maximum response could be achieved at HBsAg concentrations that were 1 percent of those required in the absence of the antibodies. These findings suggest that antigen-specific antibodies exert regulatory controls on T cells that recognize the same antigens.
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