Vaccination with T cell receptor peptides primes anti-receptor cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTL) and anergizes T cells specifically recognized by these CTL.Eur J Immunol. 1994 May; 24(5):1172-80.EJ
We selected three peptides from the germ-line sequence of the V beta 8.2 and J beta 2.3 gene segments of the murine T cell receptor for antigen (TCR) which contained putative Kd- and Ld-restricted epitopes. Immunization of BALB/c (H-2d) mice with the V beta 8.2(67-90) 23-mer peptide 1 as well as the 15-mer V beta 8.2(95-108)-peptide 2 efficiently primed specific CD8+ cytotoxic T lymphocyte (CTL) responses in vivo against natural TCR-V beta 8.2 epitopes. V beta 8.2+ T cells were not deleted in TCR peptide-immunized mice because the fractions of V beta 8.2+ CD4+ and V beta 8.2+ CD8+ T cells in spleen and lymph nodes were not altered. The proliferative response of V beta 8.2+ T cells to stimulation by monoclonal antibody F23.2 was selectively suppressed (by 60-80%) in peptide-immunized BALB/c mice, indicating partial anergy of this T subset. Immunization of BALB/c mice with the J beta 2.3-derived peptide 3 stimulated a CD8+ CTL response against a class I-restricted epitope within this J beta segment that was also generated during natural "endogenous" processing of this self antigen. These data confirm the predictive value of major histocompatibility complex class I allele-specific motifs. The described experiments indicate that TCR peptide-primed CD8+ CTL recognize class I-restricted, natural V beta/J beta-TCR epitopes. Such anti-TCR CTL may, thus, operate in V beta-specific immunoregulation of the T cell system suppressing their functional reactivity without deleting them.