What Is Direct Allorecognition?

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Direct allorecognition is the process by which donor-derived major histocompatibility complex (MHC)-peptide complexes, typically presented by donor-derived 'passenger' dendritic cells, are recognised directly by recipient T cells. In this review, we discuss the two principle theories which have been proposed to explain why individuals possess a high-precursor frequency of T cells with direct allospecificity and how self-restricted T cells recognise allogeneic MHC-peptide complexes. These theories, both of which are supported by functional and structural data, suggest that T cells recognising allogeneic MHC-peptide complexes focus either on the allopeptides bound to the allo-MHC molecules or the allo-MHC molecules themselves. We discuss how direct alloimmune responses may be sustained long term, the consequences of this for graft outcome and highlight novel strategies which are currently being investigated as a potential means of reducing rejection mediated through this pathway.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)275-283
Number of pages9
JournalCurrent transplantation reports
Issue number4
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 7 Oct 2016


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