Human corneoscleral tissue containing trabecular meshwork and cultured human trabecular cells were examined for HLA-ABC (class I) and HLA-DR (class II) antigens of the major histocompatibility complex using an indirect immunofluorescence assay. Class I antigens were detected in the trabecular meshwork on frozen sections and on cultured trabecular cells. Class II antigens were constitutively expressed on some, but not all, cells within the trabecular meshwork. Many more cells could be induced to express class II antigens by pre-incubation in human gamma interferon. Cultured trabecular cells did not express class II antigens constitutively, but expression could be induced by gamma interferon. This study suggests that, in addition to Langerhans' cells at the limbus, other cell types within the anterior segment express major histocompatibility complex-encoded class II antigens either constitutively or inducibly. These cells may be important for the initiation and regulation of ocular immunity.
- HLA antigens
- anterior segment
- major histocompatibility complex
- trabecular meshwork
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