Author(s): Nichols LA, Chen Y, Colella TA, Bennett CL, Clausen BE,
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Abstract Self-tolerance to melanocyte differentiation Ags limits the ability to generate therapeutic antimelanoma responses. However, the mechanisms responsible for CD8 T cell tolerance to these Ags are unknown. We have used a newly generated TCR-transgenic mouse to establish the basis of tolerance to one such Ag from tyrosinase. Despite expression of tyrosinase transcripts in the thymus, central deletion does not shape the tyrosinase-specific CD8 T cell repertoire. We demonstrate that this endogenously expressed melanocyte Ag is constitutively presented in both peripheral and mesenteric lymph nodes, leading to abortive activation and deletion of tyrosinase-specific CD8 T cells. Importantly, this Ag is not presented by either radio-sensitive dendritic cells, or by radio-resistant Langerhans cells. Thus, for this endogenous Ag, cross-tolerization does not appear to be an operative mechanism. Instead, we find radioresistant tyrosinase mRNA expression in lymphoid compartments where CD8 T cell deletion occurs. This suggests that direct presentation of tyrosinase by radio-resistant lymph node resident cells is entirely responsible for tolerance to this endogenous melanocyte differentiation Ag.
This article was published in J Immunol
and referenced in Journal of Clinical & Cellular Immunology