Cancer Institute A national cancer institute
designated cancer center

Yueh-hsiu Chien

Publication Details

  • A POSSIBLE BASIS FOR MAJOR HISTOCOMPATIBILITY COMPLEX-RESTRICTED T-CELL RECOGNITION PHILOSOPHICAL TRANSACTIONS OF THE ROYAL SOCIETY OF LONDON SERIES B-BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES DAVIS, M. M., Chien, Y. H., BJORKMAN, P. J., ELLIOTT, J. F., Iwashima, M., ROCK, E. P., PATTEN, P. A. 1989; 323 (1217): 521-524

    Abstract:

    Four distinct T-cell antigen-receptor gene loci have now been identified and partly characterized: alpha, beta, gamma and delta. All of these loci can rearrange in an immunoglobulin-like fashion and express polypeptides that contribute to either alpha:beta or gamma:delta T-cell receptor-CD3 complexes. Surprisingly, the T-cell receptor (TCR) delta coding regions are located entirely, or almost entirely, within the TCR alpha locus and share at least some of the V region gene segments, thus at least partly linking the two different types of receptor heterodimers. Analysis of potential T-cell receptor diversity, particularly that of the delta chain, indicates a striking concentration of somatic polymorphism in the V-J junctional region of the two heterodimers, four to six orders of magnitude higher than similar calculations for immunoglobulin light- and heavy-chain combinations. In contrast, the number of possible V region combinations in T-cell receptors is one hundredth to one thousandth that of immunoglobulins. TCR alpha: beta heterodimers are known to recognize many possible fragments of antigens embedded in the peptide-binding clefts of a relatively small number of major histocompatibility complex (MHC) molecules. Thus it is attractive to speculate that the V-J junctional portions of both types of T-cell receptor contact peptide antigens, whereas the remaining diversity regions contact the MHC. This contention is supported by molecular modelling studies and has interesting implications for the evolution of antigen-receptor genes.

    View details for Web of Science ID A1989AB41200008

    View details for PubMedID 2569209

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