Journal of Immunology vol:169 issue:5 pages:2430-5
The use of T cell epitope-containing peptides for the induction of anergy in allergen sensitization is limited by genetic restriction that could be circumvented by using universally immunogenic epitopes. We attempted to identify such epitopes on Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus group 2 allergen (Der p 2), a major allergen of D. pteronyssinus T cells from BALB/c (H-2(d)), C57BL/6 (H-2(b)), C3H (H-2(k)), and SJL (H-2(s)) mice that were immunized with rDer p 2, recognized an immunodominant region encompassing residues 21-35. A synthetic 21-35 peptide (p21-35) induced strong dose-dependent in vitro T cell proliferation with cells of the four mouse strains and required processing for MHC class II presentation. Substitution of Ile(28) with Ala resulted in reduction of T cell proliferation in each strain. Ile(28) could represent an important MHC class II anchoring residue for T cell response to p21-35. An immunodominant T cell epitope of Der p 2 therefore behaves as a universal epitope and could be a suitable candidate for T cell anergy induction.