We have shown that (a) purified T-helper cells induce cells of another T-cell set-, expressing the Ly123+Qa1+ surface phenotype, to exert potent suppressive activity, (b) this T-T interaction plays an important role in regulating in vivo immune responses, and (c) this interaction represents an important barrier to protocols intended to augment the immune status of individuals by adoptive (or active) immunotherapy. Our results also indicate that the Ly123+ T-cell set mediating feedback suppression in vivo is sensitive to both low doses of cyclophosphamide and removal of the thymus in adult life. The importance of this T-T interaction to normal, physiologic regulation of the immune system is emphasized by the finding that the major T-cell deficit of NZB mice (an inbred strain of mice that spontaneously develops an autoimmune disorder) is the absence or malfunction of an Ly123+ T-cell set responsible for feedback inhibition.

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