Autologous rosette-forming cells (Tar cells) have surface and functional characteristics of post-thymic precursors and among these characteristics there are some that have been identified in the responsive cell of the autologous mixed-lymphocyte reaction (AMLR). We therefore did AMLR with circulating mononuclear cells from normal subjects using as responding cells either total T cells, T cells depleted of Tar cells, or purified Tar cells. The response of Tar cells in AMLR was significantly greater than that of total T cells and these responded significantly more than Tar-depleted T cells. Conversely, Tar cells responded less than total T cells or T cells depleted of Tar cells in allogeneic mixed-lymphocyte reactions. Increasing numbers of Tar cells gave significantly greater AMLR responses both alone and when added to diminishing proportions of Tar-depleted T cells to keep the number of T cells constant in the system. Tar cells are the responding cells in AMLR but not in allogeneic mixed-lymphocyte reactions.
R Palacios, L Llorente, D Alarcón-Segovia, A Ruíz-Arguelles, E Díaz-Jouanen