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Distribution of productive antigen-processing activity for MHC class II presentation in macrophages

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Alexei von Delwig, Dr Julie Musson, Dr Jeong-Jin Lee, Professor John Robinson


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We demonstrated that an epitope from the recombinant protective antigen (rPA) of Bacillus anthracis was presented by mature major histocompatibility complex class II (MHC-II) molecules, whereas an epitope from the recombinant virulent (rV) antigen of Yersinia, pestis was presented by newly synthesized MHC-II. We addressed which endosomal compartments were involved in the antigen processing of each epitope. Bone-marrow-derived macrophages were subjected to subcellular fractionation; fractions were analysed for the expression of endosomal markers and used as a source of enzyme activity for the processing of rPA and rV antigens. The rPA epitope was productively processed by dense lysosomal fractions and light membrane fractions expressing early endosomal markers Rab5 and early endosomal antigen-1 as well as markers of antigen-presenting compartments (MHC-II, DM, DO and Ii chain). In contrast, the rV epitope was productively processed only by dense fractions with lysosomal activity. No productive antigen-processing activity was associated with fractions of intermediate density expressing Rab7 and Rab9, characteristic of late endosomes. The data suggest that endosomal compartments expressing Rab5 guanosine triphosphatase can productively process protein antigens for presentation by mature MHC class II molecules. © 2005 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Von Delwig A, Musson JA, Shim H-K, Lee JJ, Walker N, Harding CV, Williamson ED, Robinson JH

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Scandinavian Journal of Immunology

Year: 2005

Volume: 62

Issue: 3

Pages: 243-250

Print publication date: 01/09/2005

ISSN (print): 0300-9475

ISSN (electronic): 1365-3083

Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Ltd.


DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-3083.2005.01664.x

PubMed id: 16179011


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