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Beyond simple TCR depletion model: How MHC class and sex affect trade-offs constraining MHC gene number evolution?

The vertebrate immune system is shaped by both pressures of pathogens and by evolutionary trade-offs that constrain its structure and function. This duality is perfectly exemplified by the major histocompatibility complex (MHC), molecules that initiate the adaptive immune response by presenting foreign antigens to T cells. The remarkable population-level polymorphism of MHC genes results from a co-evolutionary arms race between hosts and pathogens, while the limited number of functional MHC loci within individuals is thought to be the consequence of an evolutionary trade-off between enhanced pathogen recognition and excessive, tolerogenic T cell depletion in the thymus. In this project I test the prediction of the TCR depletion hypothesis to see how individual MHC diversity influences the proportions and TCR repertoires of responding T cell subsets.


PSP Project No: K/PBD/000328

PI: Dr Magdalena Migalska

Project duration: 29.11.2019 - 28.05.2024

Funder: National Science Centre in Poland (NCN)