In immunology, an immunological synapse is the interface between an antigen-presenting cell and a lymphocyte. It was first discovered by Avraham Kupfer at the National Jewish Center in Denver and the term was coined by Michael Dustin at NYU who studied it in further detail. Key molecules in the synapse are the T cell receptor and its counterpart the major histocompatibility complex (MHC). Also important are LFA-1, ICAM-1, CD28, and CD80/CD86. The structure is composed of concentric rings, the C-SMAC, the P-SMAC, and the D-SMAC each containing a peculiar mix of molecules.
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