Thirty years of study of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) have resulted in a satisfying picture of this complex in two species, mice and humans. Drawn by immunologists, it shows us a multigene complex whose main function is recognition in immune responses. The picture is only sketched in many places, but it fills its canvas. It is vivid and aesthetically pleasing and in many places details have been added to the bare outlines. But this is not the only picture extant of MHC function.
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