The nature and function of suppressor factor(s) elaborated by suppressor T cells in response to certain chemically induced tumors have been further defined. Thus, suppressor factor(s) specific for the S1509a methylcholanthrene-induced fibrosarcoma have been shown to bear determinants encoded by the I-J subregion of the murine MHC since suppressive activity is removed by passage of the factor through an immunoadsorbent composed of anti-I-Jk coupled to Sepharose. No loss of activity was observed after passage of factor through control columns composed of normal mouse globulin. Furthermore, activity could be recovered from the relevant immunoadsorbent by elution with high salt.

The administration of crude suppressor factor(s) to normal animals for 4 days resulted in the development of a population of suppressor cells that act in a manner analogous to the suppressor cell population used for production of factor. These factor-induced suppressor cells are T cells and exhibit an antigen specificity similar to that displayed by the tumor-induced suppressor cells. Thus, tumor-specific suppressor factor(s) bear I-J determinants and are capable of inducing the appearance of suppressor T cells in the nontumor-bearing host, which may then act in a specific manner to limit host responsiveness to tumor antigen.

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