Myelin proteolipid protein (PLP) is a prime candidate autoantigen for multiple sclerosis. In order to define potential immunodominant epitopes, T cell lines (TCL) from the peripheral blood of HLA-DR 15(2) MS patients were established which responded to the intact molecule of PLP. These TCL were then tested in individual proliferation assays with a variety of PLP peptides spanning most of the PLP molecule. Multiple peptides were recognized by TCL from the MS population, with more than one peptide often recognized by lines from the same individual. Three immunodominant peptides were identified which were recognized by the majority of MS patients. Estimated frequency analyses were then performed on the peripheral blood of HLA-DR15(2)-positive MS and control subjects using TCL initiated by the three immunodominant peptides, 40-60, 95-117, and 185-206. TCL from HLA-DR15 MS subjects recognized peptide 95-117 significantly more often than TCL from control subjects.