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Wegener, Anne-Marie K.; Letourneur, François; Hoeveler, Arnd; Brocker, Thomas; Luton, Frédéric; Malissen, Bernard (1992): The T cell receptor/CD3 complex is composed of at least two autonomous transduction modules. In: Cell, Vol. 68, No. 1: pp. 83-95


Recent studies have demonstrated that the CD3-ζ subunit of the T cell antigen receptor (TCR) complex is involved in signal transduction. However, the function of the remaining invariant subunits, CD3-γ, -δ, and , is still poorly understood. To examine their role in TCR function, we have constructed TCR/CD3 complexes devoid of functional ζ subunit and showed that they are still able to trigger the production of interleukin-2 in response to antigen or superantigen. These data, together with previous results, indicate that the TCR/CD3 complex is composed of at least two parallel transducing units, made of the γδ and ζ chains, respectively, Furthermore, the analysis of partially truncated ζ chains has led us to individualize a functional domain that may have constituted the building block of most of the transducing subunits associated with antigen receptors and some Fc receptors.