Inhibition of human T-cell responses to house dust mite allergens by a T-cell receptor peptide

Elizabeth R. Jarman, Catherine M. Hawrylowicz, Elizabeth Panagiotopolou, Robyn E. O'Hehir, Jonathan R. Lamb

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Recent analysis of the usage of T-cell receptor (TcR) β chain variable region (Vβ) gene elements by house dust mite (HDM)-reactive T cells from an atopic donor suggested that TcR-Vβ3 gene products may form a major component of the human T-cell repertoire reactive to this common allergen. In this study a peptide analog of the TcR-Vβ3 complementarity determining region 2 (CDR2) is shown to inhibit the polyclonal human T-cell response to HDM; this effect is specific because inhibition is dependent on the presence of Vβ3 + T cells. This experimental approach has been used to determine whether the pattern seen in T-cell clones derived from one atopic donor reflects TcR-Vβ usage in the polyclonal response to allergen in the general population. Inhibition of more than 50% of the polyclonal response to allergen by Vβ3-CDR2 peptide was observed in 16 of 21 donors tested, suggesting that TcR-Vβ3 gene usage may form a major component of the human HDM repertoire and as such offer a suitable target for T cell-directed specific immunotherapy in HDM-allergic individuals. Depletion of CD8+ T cells abolishes peptide-mediated inhibition of CD4+ T-cell proliferation to HDM, suggesting that induction of a CD8 + regulatory T-cell subset by the CDR2 peptide may modulate HDM-specific allergic T-cell responses.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)844-852
Number of pages9
JournalThe Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 1994
Externally publishedYes


  • House dust mite
  • T cells
  • TcR-CDR2 peptide

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