Peripheral selection of the T cell repertoire

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Science  08 Mar 1991:
Vol. 251, Issue 4998, pp. 1225-1228
DOI: 10.1126/science.1900951


T lymphocytes undergo selection events not only in the thymus, but also after they leave the thymus and reside in the periphery. Peripheral selection was found to be dependent on T cell receptor (TCR)-ligand interactions but to differ from thymic selection with regard to specificity and mechanism. Unlike thymic selection, peripheral selection required binding of antigen to the TCR, and it induced expansion of T cell clones. Tolerance to self antigens that are restricted to the periphery occurred through the elimination of self-reactive T cells and by the clonal anergy, which was associated with down-regulation of the alpha beta TCR and CD8.

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