The Tenth International Histocompatibility Workshop of this work, and Fran Berman for her help in preparing component concerning T-cell recognition of HLA class the report. MaryAnn Barletta, Sally Krell, and Halina II molecules drew its strength from the hard work, Korsun provided invaluable help with a multitude of diligence, and selfless spirit of the 23 participating organizational and operational issues. Bo Dupont and laboratories. The enthusiasm and camaraderie exhib Bob Knowles provided sound advice, helpful discus ited by the participants in Princeton during November sions, and continued support. John Hansen, Jean Marc 1987 bear testimony to the caliber of the individuals Lalouel, and the other members ofthe Organizing Com involved. mittee made valuable contributions. Rosemarie Pliitke's Numerous individuals, both inside and outside of the enthusiasm, diligence, and statistical expertise were Organizing Committee, contributed significantly to the vital ingredients in this undertaking. John Klein was success of this component of the Workshop. We thank always ready to step in and assume whatever responsibil David Eckels, Adrianna Zeevi, Nancy Reinsmoen, and ity was necessary to keep the work going. Above all, I Eric Mickelson for their continued advice, encourage owe special and personal thanks to my family, whose ment, and hard work throughout this endeavor. We thank patience, support, and understanding helped to sustain Deborah Richardson for her help during the early stages me over the last 2 years."
This volume deals with the structure and function of molecules that have, during the last decade, turned out to have a central role in immune responses. Trans plantation antigens were discovered and characterized by Gorer about 50 years ago, and the biological basis for the unequalled complexity of their variability between individuals within a species, in spite of extreme conservation between species, was the subject of intense research and discussion for many years. During the days of belief in "immune surveillance" against spontaneously developing tumors, it was suggested that histoincompatibility between members of one species would prevent cancer from being a contagious disease and thus a threat to the species. Immunologists involved in human transplantation had to learn and care about the complexity, especially after 1967, when it was found that HLA antigens were the products of the human MHC. Rejection of HLA-identical sib kidney grafts was so rare, even in those days, that cases of rejection were described in scientific papers.
This book presents an authoritative collection of HLA phenotyping and genotyping techniques to be used at the bench level and as a reference. It includes detailed methodologies, notes on the interpretation of tests, reference material, and appendices.
The human leukocyte antigen (HLA) or tissue types are the products of a rapidly developing field of knowledge within the last 20 years. In the early stages of the research many investigators suspected the existence of a complex series of transplantation antigens, but it was widely believed that these antigens would not be well-defined even in this century. Yet in the last two decades as many as 124 different HLA antigens determined by at least 7 very closely linked genes located on the short arm of chromosome 6 have been identified and subsequently agreed upon by an international nomenclature committee. 1 Extensive international collaboration fueled by the potential clinical application of these antigens to clinical transplantation has advanced the field rapidly. There were nine inter national histocompatibility workshops held during this period. Although iden tification of HLA antigens was of primary clinical importance in transplantation 2 and of great basic interest in human genetics and anthropology, a rather un expected bonus has been the determination that HLA antigens are associated with disease susceptibility to a greater extent than any other known genetic marker in man. In the past, many genetic polymorphisms have been suspected to be associated with diseases. The most extensively studied markers are blood groups, enzymes, and serum proteins. A comprehensive account of published studies, totalling approximately 1,000, of these markers is available in a book by Mourant et al.