T-cell receptor binding affinities and kinetics: impact on T-cell activity and specificity

Jennifer D. Stone, Adam S. Chervin, David M. Kranz

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


The interaction between the T-cell receptor (TCR) and its peptide-major histocompatibility complex (pepMHC) ligand plays a critical role in determining the activity and specificity of the T cell. The binding properties associated with these interactions have now been studied in many systems, providing a framework for a mechanistic understanding of the initial events that govern T-cell function. There have been various other reviews that have described the structural and biochemical features of TCR : pepMHC interactions. Here we provide an overview of four areas that directly impact our understanding of T-cell function, as viewed from the perspective of the TCR : pepMHC interaction: (1) relationships between T-cell activity and TCR : pepMHC binding parameters, (2) TCR affinity, avidity and clustering, (3) influence of coreceptors on pepMHC binding by TCRs and T-cell activity, and (4) impact of TCR binding affinity on antigenic peptide specificity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)165-176
Number of pages12
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2009


  • Agonists
  • Antagonists
  • Binding affinity
  • Coreceptors
  • Dissociation rate
  • Major histocompatibility complex
  • Peptide specificity
  • Peptide-major histocompatibility complex
  • Serial triggering
  • T-cell receptor
  • T-cell receptor clustering

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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