A role for "self" in T-cell activation

Semin Immunol. 2007 Aug;19(4):236-44. doi: 10.1016/j.smim.2007.04.003. Epub 2007 Jun 4.


The mechanisms by which alphabeta T-cells are selected in the thymus and then recognize peptide MHC (pMHC) complexes in the periphery remain an enigma. Recent work particularly with respect to quantification of T-cell sensitivity and the role of self-ligands in T-cell activation has provided some important clues to the details of how TCR signaling might be initiated. Here, we highlight recent experimental data that provides insights into the initiation of T-cell activation and also discuss the main controversies and uncertainties in this area.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antigen-Presenting Cells / immunology*
  • CD8 Antigens / immunology
  • Humans
  • Lymph Nodes / immunology
  • Lymphocyte Activation / immunology*
  • Peptides / immunology
  • Spleen / immunology
  • T-Lymphocytes / immunology*
  • Thymus Gland / immunology


  • CD8 Antigens
  • Peptides