GSBS Student Publications


Stability and diversity of T cell receptor repertoire usage during lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus infection of mice

GSBS Program

Not applicable

Publication Date


UMMS Affiliation

Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences; Department of Pathology and Program in Immunology and Virology

Document Type



Life Sciences | Medicine and Health Sciences


Numerous studies have examined T cell receptor (TCR) usage of selected virus-specific T cell clones, yet little information is available regarding the stability and diversity of TCR repertoire usage during viral infections. Here, we analyzed the Vbeta8.1 TCR repertoire directly ex vivo by complementarity-determining region 3 (CDR3) length spectratyping throughout the acute lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus (LCMV) infection, into memory, and under conditions of T cell clonal exhaustion. The Vbeta8 population represented 30-35% of the LCMV-induced CD8(+) T cells and included T cells recognizing several LCMV-encoded peptides, allowing for a comprehensive study of a multiclonal T cell response against a complex antigen. Genetically identical mice generated remarkably different T cell responses, as reflected by different spectratypes and different TCR sequences in same sized spectratype bands; however, a conserved CDR3 motif was found within some same sized bands. This indicated that meaningful studies on the evolution of the T cell repertoire required longitudinal studies within individual mice. Such longitudinal studies with peripheral blood lymphocyte samples showed that (a) the virus-induced T cell repertoire changes little during the apoptosis period after clearance of the viral antigens; (b) the LCMV infection dramatically skews the host T cell repertoire in the memory state; and (c) continuous selection of the T cell repertoire occurs under conditions of persistent infections.

DOI of Published Version



J Exp Med. 1998 Dec 7;188(11):1993-2005.

Journal/Book/Conference Title

The Journal of experimental medicine

Related Resources

Link to article in PubMed

PubMed ID