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Immunity. 1999 Jul;11(1):67-77.

Direct assessment of MHC class I binding by seven Ly49 inhibitory NK cell receptors.

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Department of Molecular and Cell Biology, University of California, Berkeley 94720, USA.


Mouse NK cells express at least seven inhibitory Ly49 receptors. Here we employ a semiquantitative cell-cell adhesion assay as well as class I/peptide tetramers to provide a comprehensive analysis of specificities of Ly49 receptors for class I MHC molecules in eight MHC haplotypes. Different Ly49 receptors exhibited diverse binding properties. The degree of class I binding was related to the extent of functional inhibition. The tetramer studies demonstrated that neither glycosylation nor coreceptors were necessary for class I binding to Ly49 receptors and uncovered peptide-specific recognition by a Ly49 receptor. The results provide a foundation for interpreting and integrating many existing functional studies as well as for designing tests of NK cell development and self-tolerance.

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