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Variation in epitopes of infectious pathogens inhibits various effector functions of T lymphocytes through antagonism of the T-cell receptor. However, a more powerful strategy for immune evasion would be to prevent the induction of T-cell responses. We report here mutual 'interference' with the priming of human T-cell responses by a pair of naturally occurring variants of a malaria cytotoxic T-cell epitope. Interference with priming also occurs in vivo for a murine malaria T-cell epitope. Reshaping of the T-cell repertoire by such immune interference during naive T-cell induction may provide a general mechanism for observed patterns of immunodominance and persistence by many polymorphic pathogens.

Original publication

DOI

10.1038/8444

Type

Journal article

Journal

Nat Med

Publication Date

05/1999

Volume

5

Pages

565 - 571

Keywords

Antigen Presentation, Antigenic Variation, Antigens, Protozoan, Epitopes, Humans, Ligands, Lymphocyte Activation, Malaria, Falciparum, Peptide Fragments, Protozoan Proteins, Receptors, Antigen, T-Cell, T-Lymphocytes, T-Lymphocytes, Cytotoxic