Mature CD4+ T cells perceive a positively selecting class II MHC/peptide complex in the periphery

Pawel Muranski, Bartosz Chmielowski, Leszek Ignatowicz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


A repertoire of TCRs is selected in the thymus by interactions with MHC bound to self-derived peptides. Whether self peptides bound to MHC influence the survival of mature T cells in the periphery remains enigmatic. In this study, we show that the number of naive CD4+ T cells that developed in mice with class II MHC bound with endogenous peptides (A(b)wt) diminished when transferred into mice with A(b) covalently bound with a single peptide (AbEp). Moreover, transfer of a mixture of naive CD4+ T cells derived from A(b)wt and from A(b)Ep mice into A(b)Ep mice resulted in the expansion of the latter and decline of the former. In contrast, when wild-type activated CD4+ T cells were transferred into AbEp or Abwt mice, these cells survived in both recipients for more than 4 wk, but further expanded in the Abwt host. We conclude that to survive, naive CD4+ T cells favor peripheral expression of the class II MHC/peptide complex(es) involved in their thymic selection, whereas some of activated CD4+ T cells may require them only for expansion.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3087-3094
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Immunology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Mar 15 2000
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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