We have probed the mechanism by which immature B cells are uniquely susceptible to antigen-induced inactivation. Our studies have demonstrated that this tolerance trigger is an active process that requires both energy metabolism and the biosynthesis of various macromolecules, including protein, RNA, and DNA. However, the tolerance trigger is resistant to inhibitors of patching and capping, as well as an inhibitor of mitosis. The tolerance trigger requires a high-affinity interaction between a multivalent antigen and the cells' Ig receptor, but apparently does not require interactions with other cell surface molecules, or interactions with T cells or macrophages. Our efforts to demonstrate the physiological applicability of this tolerance trigger have concentrated on an attempt to demonstrate potentially self-reactive cells within the immature bone marrow population that do not appear in the mature splenic B cell population. To date we have identified prereceptor B cells of several specificities whose frequency is much lower in the spleen and whose elimination appears to involve tolerance rather than antiidiotypic regulation. However, the demonstration that such cells are eliminated by contact with self-antigens has not as yet been accomplished.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||5|
|State||Published - 1985|
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