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Immunity. 2001 Nov;15(5):691-701.

Exclusion of CD43 from the immunological synapse is mediated by phosphorylation-regulated relocation of the cytoskeletal adaptor moesin.

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Laboratory of Immunology, Lymphocyte Biology Section, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA.


Formation of the immunological synapse requires TCR signal-dependent protein redistribution. However, the specific molecular mechanisms controlling protein relocation are not well defined. Moesin is a widely expressed phospho-protein that links many transmembrane molecules to the cortical actin cytoskeleton. Here, we demonstrate that TCR-induced exclusion of the large sialoprotein CD43 from the synapse is an active event mediated by its reversible binding to moesin. Our results also reveal that relocalization of moesin is associated with changes in the phosphorylation status of this cytoskeletal adaptor protein. Finally, these findings raise the possibility that the change in moesin localization resulting from TCR engagement modifies the overall topology of the lymphocyte membrane and facilitates molecular interactions at the site of presenting cell contact.

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