We have investigated the ability of long-term cultured T helper (Th) cell lines to help an in vivo cytotoxic T lymphocyte (CTL) response to non-H-2 alloantigens (minor antigens). Th cell lines specific for various single or undefined minor antigens were selected by regular restimulation with antigen in vitro. They were antigen specific and H-2 restricted in proliferation assays and were found to be able to help primary CTL responses to multiple minor antigens and secondary CTL responses to single minor antigens. Although the Th were antigen specific they did not determine the specificity of the CTL. Th cells were both necessary and limiting for an effective CTL response indicating that "helper-independent" CTL are not in themselves sufficient to generate a strong in vivo response. Under conditions where a CTL response was clearly H-2 restricted, Th cells were not. Thus, the Th cells appeared to be activated by reprocessed antigen rather than antigen on the surface of the injected antigenic cells even though the CTL themselves reacted directly to the injected antigen.