Single alanine substitutions were introduced into the CDR1 region of the β chain of a Kd-restricted TCR. Mutants and wild-type TCR were attached to the ζ chain of the CD3 complex and expressed at the surface of a rat basophil cell line. Transfectants were tested for the binding of purified soluble Kd-peptlde complexes. With this experimental system, accessory molecules are unlikely to play a major role and the contribution of each residue to the interaction can be addressed. Results show that all positions in the CDR1 region are involved in the binding to the Kd-peptide complex but at varying degrees. These effects are discussed in relation to a molecular model of the TCR. Comparison of these results with previous data obtained in a T cell hybridoma system suggests the existence of a threshold in the TCR affinity necessary for mature T cell activation.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/david-ojcius/209/