Clearer definition of the recognitive structures of human T lymphocytes for antigens will be required to elucidate the molecular basis of diseases and immunological responses induced or regulated by normal or abnormal T-cell function. For this purpose we have investigated the cellular requirements for immune responses in vitro to trinitrophenyl-conjugated peripheral blood mononuclear cells. The responding cell was characterized as a T cell on the basis of rosetting with sheep erythrocytes. T-cell recognition of hapten in proliferative responses depended upon presentation of antigen in an appropriate stimulator-cell context. Neither autologous hapten-modified erythrocytes nor T cells restimulated responses of in vitro-primed lymphocytes. Moreover, hapten-conjugated non-T cells were more effective than modified unfractionated cells in restimulating proliferative responses. Both macrophages and non-T lymphocytes effectively restimulated hapten-conjugate responses.
Michael F. Seldin, Robert R. Rich, Stuart L. Abramson