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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1996 Feb 20;93(4):1453-7.

Physical and functional independency of p70 and p58 natural killer (NK) cell receptors for HLA class I: their role in the definition of different groups of alloreactive NK cell clones.

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  • 1Istituto Scentifico Tumori e Centro di Biotecnologie Avanzate, Genoa, Italy.


Natural killer (NK) cells express clonally distributed receptors for different groups of HLA class I alleles. The Z27 monoclonal antibody described in this study recognizes a p70 receptor specific for HLA-B alleles belonging to the Bw4 supertypic specificity. Single amino acid substitutions in the peptide-binding groove of HLA-B2705 molecules influenced the recognition by some, but not all, p7O/Z27+ clones. This suggests the existence of a limited polymorphism within the p7O family of receptors. The pattern of reactivity of monoclonal antibody Z27 revealed that Bw4-specific receptors may be expressed alone or in combination with different (GL183 and/or EB6) p58 molecules. Analysis of NK clones coexpressing p58 and p7O receptors allowed us to demonstrate that the two molecules represent physically and functionally independent receptors. The expression of p7O molecules either alone or in combination with EB6 molecules provided the molecular basis for understanding the cytolytic pattern of two previously defined groups of "alloreactive" NK cell clones ("group 3" and "group 5").

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