Superantigen recognition by γδ T cells: SEA recognition site for human Vγ2 T cell receptors

Craig T. Morita, Hongmin Li, James G. Lamphear, Robert R. Rich, John D. Fraser, Roy A. Mariuzza, Hoi K. Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

51 Scopus citations


Human γδ T cells expressing the Vγ2Vδ2 antigen receptors recognize nonpeptide prenyl pyrophosphate and alkylamine antigens. We find that they also recognize staphylococcal enterotoxin A superantigens in a manner distinct from the recognition of nonpeptide antigens. Using chimeric and mutant toxins, SEA amino acid residues 20-27 were shown to be required for γδ TCR recognition of SEA. Residues at 200-207 that are critical for specific αβ TCR recognition of SEA do not affect γδ TCR recognition. SEA residues 20-27 are located in an area contiguous with the binding site of V β chains. This study defines a superantigen recognition site for a γδ T cell receptor and demonstrates the differences between Vγ2Vδ2+ T cell recognition of superantigens and nonpeptide antigens.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)331-344
Number of pages14
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Infectious Diseases


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