Tolerance to self and the processing and presentation of self antigens

David T. Hagerty, Paul M. Allen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Antigen processing and presentation is critical to the generation and maintenance of self tolerance. The hemoglobin system has provided important data on self antigen processing and presentation in vivo. Hemoglobin/la complexes were detectable in the thymus before the time of positive and negative selection. In addition, thymic epithelial cells were shown to lack the costimulatory factors necessary to trigger T cell clone proliferation. We have extended these findings to the Renal proximal tubule. This class II MHC-expressing epithelial cell was demonstrated to process and present foreign as well as self antigens to T cell hybridomas. Current studies are examining whether this epithelial cell possesses the costimulatory factors Required to fully stimulate T cell clones, or whether the proximal tubule may play an important Role in the maintenance of self tolerance. In addition we describe the exciting model of murine autoimmune myocarditis. We have demonstrated that this is a T cell mediated disease and believe that cardiac antigen presenting cells constitutively process and present the inciting self antigen, myosin. These studies may provide important insights into autoimmunity and self tolerance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)313-319
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Reviews of Immunology
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1993


  • Antigen presentation
  • Autoimmunity
  • Self tolerance
  • T cells


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