MHC restriction

Jeffrey Frelinger jfrelin at
Fri Feb 28 09:45:31 EST 1997

Ken Miyasaki wrote:
> I was just curious as to how immunologists viewed "MHC restriction."
> Does it really exist? Isn't it just a laboratory artifact (based upon
> measurement of secondary immune responses)? Doesn't the TCR see mainly
> the antigen and not the MHC (with greater than three orders of magnitude
> difference in affinity). So why was the 1996 Nobel Prize awarded to
> people who proposed this dual cognition stuff?

Wrong.  TCR doesn't see antigen at all.  Basically no affinty for free
protein, or more properly free peptide.

If anything it sees much more of the MHC than the bound peptide.  For
the visual minded see TCR/MHC structure Garcia et al. Science 274:209.

More information about the Immuno mailing list