Low Constitutive Cell Surface Expression of HLA-B Is Caused by a Posttranslational Mechanism Involving Glu180 and Arg239

Christoffer Dellgren, Vanessa A. C. Ekwelum, Maria Ormhøj, Nicole Pallesen, Julie Knudsen, Jan O Nehlin, Torben Barington

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Abstrakt

HLA class I cell surface expression is crucial for normal immune responses, and variability in HLA expression may influence the course of infections. We have previously shown that classical HLA class I expression on many human cell types is biased with greatly reduced expression of HLA-B compared with HLA-A in the absence of inflammatory signals. In the search for the mechanisms responsible for this discrepancy, we have recently reported that the regulation is mainly posttranslational and that the C-terminal part of the α2 domain and the α3 domain contain the molecular determinants that explain most of the variability of expression between common HLA-A and -B allomorphs. In this study, we present a fine mapping of the structural determinants that allow such variability by exchanging key amino acids located within the C-terminal part of the α2 domain and the α3 domain of HLA-A2 and -B8, including Glu/Asp at position 177, Gln/Glu at position 180, Gly/Arg at position 239, and Pro/Ser at position 280. We found that the HLA-A2 and -B8 expression profiles could be interconverted to a large extent by mutual exchange of Gln/Glu at position 180 or by Gly/Arg at position 239. The presence of Gln(180) and Gly(239), as in HLA-A2, led to higher cell surface expression levels when compared with the presence of Glu(180) and Arg(239), as in HLA-B8. This indicates that the amino acids at positions 180 and 239 determine the level of cell surface expression of common HLA-A and -B allomorphs, probably by affecting HLA processing in the Ag presentation pathway.

OriginalsprogEngelsk
TidsskriftJournal of Immunology
Vol/bind197
Udgave nummer12
Sider (fra-til)4807-4816
ISSN0022-1767
DOI
StatusUdgivet - 2016

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