T cells as antigen-presenting cells

Immunol Today. 1994 Jul;15(7):312-5. doi: 10.1016/0167-5699(94)90078-7.


Human T cells express major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class II antigens and adhesion molecules characteristic of antigen-presenting cells (APCs), and recent in vitro and in vivo evidence supports an antigen-presenting function for T cells. In this guise, T cells provide downregulatory signals for the immune response by inducing anergy in T cells that have already been activated and cytotoxicity in resting T cells. Here, Werner Pichler and Tony Wyss-Coray suggest that this may represent an important negative mechanism for T-cell homeostasis.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Antigen Presentation / immunology
  • Antigen-Presenting Cells / immunology*
  • Antigens, CD*
  • B7-1 Antigen / biosynthesis
  • B7-2 Antigen
  • Cell Adhesion Molecules / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Lymphocyte Activation / immunology
  • Membrane Glycoproteins*
  • T-Lymphocytes / immunology*


  • Antigens, CD
  • B7-1 Antigen
  • B7-2 Antigen
  • CD86 protein, human
  • Cell Adhesion Molecules
  • Membrane Glycoproteins