The mouse has served as an invaluable model for investigations of immune response (Ir) genes. Of most importance has been major histocompatibility complex (MHC) linked Ir genes. The MHC genes have been demonstrated to be the prime factor in determination of the ability to respond to an antigenic stimulus. One of the more intriguing findings has been the capacity of a relatively small number of Ir genes to determine immune reactivity to a diverse collection of antigens. This review will deal with the extent of the antigen diversity and the nature of the antigenic determinants. Data are summarized for over 100 independent antigen systems involving infectious agents (bacteria, viruses, parasites), as well as living but not infectious agents (histoincompatible cells). Finally, the more recent findings utilizing antigenically defined (to varying degrees) proteins are presented. The contributions of each antigen type to the understanding of Ir gene function are discussed. Even though studies on synthetic polypeptides have enabled defining and elucidation of immune response genes, we have not extensively covered this area in this survey. Several excellent reviews of this studies are available.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||47|
|Journal||Critical reviews in immunology|
|State||Published - Jan 1981|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy