Have we cut ourselves too short in mapping CTL epitopes?

Trends Immunol. 2006 Jan;27(1):11-6. doi: 10.1016/j.it.2005.11.001. Epub 2005 Nov 16.


MHC class I molecules generally present peptides of eight to ten amino acids; however, peptides of 11-14 residues can also elicit dominant cytotoxic T lymphocyte responses, sometimes at the expense of overlapping shorter peptides. Although long-bulged epitopes are considered to represent a barrier for T cell receptor recognition, recent structural data reveal how these super-bulged peptides are engaged while simultaneously maintaining MHC restriction. We propose that algorithms widely used to predict class I-binding peptides should now be broadened to include peptides of over ten residues in length.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte / chemistry
  • Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte / immunology*
  • Histocompatibility Antigens / immunology
  • Humans
  • Receptors, Antigen, T-Cell / chemistry
  • Receptors, Antigen, T-Cell / immunology
  • T-Lymphocytes, Cytotoxic / chemistry
  • T-Lymphocytes, Cytotoxic / immunology*


  • Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte
  • Histocompatibility Antigens
  • Receptors, Antigen, T-Cell