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The author addresses some recent concepts revealed by past and current investigations of immunological tolerance and experimental models of autoimmunity. The cellular and subcellular events and their modulation which leads to self tolerance and autoimmunity is addressed. Consideration is also given to the mechanism of tolerance induction in various lymphocyte classes and their subsets. Special attention has been given to the role of CD4+ T cell subsets in initiation, progression and regulation of autoimmune diseases. Different assaults on the immune system and its host which can result in autoimmunity are discussed.
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