The TCR-gamma and -delta chains of six murine hybridomas were compared by one-dimensional SDS-PAGE and two-dimensional NEPHGE/SDS-PAGE analysis. This allowed the identification of three distinct gamma chains (gamma a, gamma b, and gamma c) and three distinct delta chains (delta a, delta b, and delta c). Four gamma/delta chain combinations (gamma a delta a, gamma b delta b, gamma b delta c, and gamma c delta a) were observed. These results indicate that multiple forms of the delta chain are expressed and suggest that the delta chains are encoded for by an Ig-like rearranging gene. This delta chain polymorphism significantly enhances the potential diversity of TCR-gamma/delta, which may be of importance for a better understanding of the putative ligand(s) recognized by this receptor.

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