Limited heterogeneity of T cell receptors from lymphocytes mediating autoimmune encephalomyelitis allows specific immune intervention

Cell. 1988 Jul 15;54(2):263-73. doi: 10.1016/0092-8674(88)90558-2.


Experimental allergic encephalomyelitis (EAE) is an induced autoimmune disease mediated by CD4+ T lymphocytes. Analysis of T cell receptors of myelin basic protein-specific encephalitogenic T cell clones derived from six different PL/J (H-2u) or (PL/J x SJL) F1 (H-2uxs) mice revealed a limited heterogeneity in primary structure. In vivo, the majority of T lymphocytes recognize the N-terminal MBP-nonapeptide in association with I-Au and utilize the V beta 8 gene element. cDNA-sequencing showed that all T cell receptors from a panel of such T cell clones, grown in vitro, share the same V alpha gene segment. Despite heterogeneity in the D-J regions, the clones unexpectedly display a striking similarity in fine specificity. Based on these results, prevention and reversal of autoimmune disease with V beta 8-specific monoclonal antibodies was achieved.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / therapeutic use*
  • Autoimmune Diseases / immunology
  • Autoimmune Diseases / therapy*
  • Base Sequence
  • Clone Cells
  • Cross Reactions
  • Encephalomyelitis, Autoimmune, Experimental / immunology
  • Encephalomyelitis, Autoimmune, Experimental / therapy*
  • Epitopes / analysis
  • Female
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Random Allocation
  • Receptors, Antigen, T-Cell / genetics
  • Receptors, Antigen, T-Cell / immunology*
  • Sequence Homology, Nucleic Acid
  • T-Lymphocytes / immunology*


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Epitopes
  • Receptors, Antigen, T-Cell

Associated data

  • GENBANK/M21205
  • GENBANK/M21206