Open conformers: the hidden face of MHC-I molecules.

F A Arosa, S G Santos, Simon John Powis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

75 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A pool of MHC-I molecules present at the plasma membrane can dissociate from the peptide and/or the light chain, becoming open MHC-I conformers. Whereas peptide-bound MHC-I molecules have an important role in regulating adaptive and innate immune responses, through trans-interactions with T cell and NK cell receptors, the function of the open MHC-I conformers is less clear but seems to be related to their inherent ability to cis-associate, both with themselves and with other receptors. Here, we review data indicating the open MHC-I conformers as regulators of ligand-receptor interactions and discuss the biological implications for immune and non-immune cells. The likelihood that the MHC-I heavy chains have hidden functions that are determined by the amino acid sequence of the alpha 1 and alpha 2 domains are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)115-123
Number of pages9
JournalTrends in Immunology
Volume28
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2007

Keywords

  • HLA CLASS-I
  • HEAVY-CHAINS
  • CELL-SURFACE
  • T-CELLS
  • INSULIN-RECEPTORS
  • HISTOCOMPATIBILITY ANTIGENS
  • TRANSFERRIN RECEPTOR
  • MONOCLONAL-ANTIBODY
  • HEREDITARY HEMOCHROMATOSIS
  • LYMPHOBLASTOID-CELLS

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