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Immunity. 2001 Dec;15(6):971-83.

CD40 is a cellular receptor mediating mycobacterial heat shock protein 70 stimulation of CC-chemokines.

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Peter Gorer Department of Immunobiology, Guy's, King's, and St. Thomas' Medical School, KCL, London, United Kingdom.


The 70 kDa mycobacterial heat shock protein (Mtb HSP70) stimulates mononuclear cells to release CC-chemokines. We now show that this function of Mtb HSP70, but not human HSP70, is dependent on the cell surface expression of CD40. Deletion of the CD40 cytoplasmic tail abolished, and CD40 antibody inhibited, Mtb HSP70 stimulation of CC-chemokine release. Mtb HSP70 stimulated THP1, KG1 cells, and monocyte-derived dendritic cells to produce RANTES. Specific binding of CD40-transfected HEK 293 cells to Mtb HSP70 was demonstrated by surface plasmon resonance. Coimmunoprecipitation of Mtb HSP70 with CD40 indicates a physical association between these molecules. The results suggest that CD40 is critical in microbial HSP70 binding and stimulation of RANTES production.

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