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Int Immunol. 2010 Mar;22(3):191-203. doi: 10.1093/intimm/dxp127. Epub 2010 Jan 21.

Predominant occupation of the class I MHC molecule H-2Kwm7 with a single self-peptide suggests a mechanism for its diabetes-protective effect.

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  • 1Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, NY 10461, USA.

Abstract

Type 1 diabetes (T1D) is an autoimmune disease characterized by T cell-mediated destruction of insulin-producing pancreatic beta cells. In both humans and the non-obese diabetic (NOD) mouse model of T1D, class II MHC alleles are the primary determinant of disease susceptibility. However, class I MHC genes also influence risk. These findings are consistent with the requirement for both CD4(+) and CD8(+) T cells in the pathogenesis of T1D. Although a large body of work has permitted the identification of multiple mechanisms to explain the diabetes-protective effect of particular class II MHC alleles, studies examining the protective influence of class I alleles are lacking. Here, we explored this question by performing biochemical and structural analyses of the murine class I MHC molecule H-2K(wm7), which exerts a diabetes-protective effect in NOD mice. We have found that H-2K(wm7) molecules are predominantly occupied by the single self-peptide VNDIFERI, derived from the ubiquitous protein histone H2B. This unexpected finding suggests that the inability of H-2K(wm7) to support T1D development could be due, at least in part, to the failure of peptides from critical beta-cell antigens to adequately compete for binding and be presented to T cells. Predominant presentation of a single peptide would also be expected to influence T-cell selection, potentially leading to a reduced ability to select a diabetogenic CD8(+) T-cell repertoire. The report that one of the predominant peptides bound by T1D-protective HLA-A*31 is histone derived suggests the potential translation of our findings to human diabetes-protective class I MHC molecules.

PMID:
20093428
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC2829095
Free PMC Article

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