Interleukin 2 (IL-2), one of the first lymphokines to be identified, plays a major role in the clonal expansion of T lymphocytes (T cells) by interacting with specific cell surface receptors (IL-2 receptors; Morgan et al. 1976; Smith 1984,1988; Taniguchi et al. 1986 a). Expression of both IL-2 and IL-2 receptor requires T cell activation, triggered primarily by the interaction of the antigen/MHC molecules: T cell receptor complex (CD3/Ti complex). Hence, in effect, clonal proliferation of antigen-specific T cells appears to occur via a process of signal transduction, wherein the specific interaction of antigen/MHC and the T cell receptor complex is converted into a pathway of cellular growth through the operation of the IL-2 system.
KeywordsCell Receptor Complex
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