Mimicking the way to autoimmunity: An evolving theory of sequence and structural homology

Adam P. Kohm, Kevin G. Fuller, Stephen D. Miller*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

78 Scopus citations


Although the etiology of autoimmune diseases remains largely unknown, a prevailing theory concerns the infection-induced activation of self-reactive lymphocytes via the process of molecular mimicry. Here, we discuss the theory of molecular mimicry and its continued evolution from the initial basic considerations of sequence similarity to the current theories of structural homology. Such findings serve to further our understanding of T-cell receptor degeneracy and might one day provide a direct link between infection and autoimmune disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)101-105
Number of pages5
JournalTrends in Microbiology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2003


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Virology

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