A novel mechanism for breaking T cell self tolerance is described. B cells induced to make autoantibody by immunization of mice with the non-self protein human cytochrome c can present the self protein mouse cytochrome c to autoreactive T cells in immunogenic form. This mechanism of breaking T cell self tolerance could account for the role of foreign antigens in breaking not only B cell but also T cell self tolerance, leading to sustained autoantibody production in the absence of the foreign antigen.

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