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Science 304 (5675): 1314-1317

Copyright © 2004 by the American Association for the Advancement of Science

Antigen Bias in T Cell Cross-Priming

Monika C. Wolkers, Nathalie Brouwenstijn,* Arnold H. Bakker,* Mireille Toebes, Ton N. M. Schumacher{dagger}

Abstract: Activated CD8+ T cells detect virally infected cells and tumor cells by recognition of major histocompatibility complex class I–bound peptides derived from degraded, endogenously produced proteins. In contrast, CD8+ T cell activation often occurs through interaction with specialized antigen-presenting cells displaying peptides acquired from an exogenous cellular source, a process termed cross-priming. Here, we observed a marked inefficiency in exogenous presentation of epitopes derived from signal sequences in mouse models. These data indicate that certain virus- and tumor-associated antigens may not be detected by CD8+ T cells because of impaired cross-priming. Such differences in the ability to cross-present antigens should form important considerations in vaccine design.

Division of Immunology, Netherlands Cancer Institute, Plesmanlaan 121, 1066 CX Amsterdam, Netherlands.

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* These authors contributed equally to this work.

{dagger} To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: t.schumacher{at}

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