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Cell. 1992 Dec 11;71(6):963-72.

Expression of a membrane protease enhances presentation of endogenous antigens to MHC class I-restricted T lymphocytes.

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Laboratory of Viral Diseases, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Bethesda, Maryland 20906.


We find that expression of the membrane dipeptidyl carboxypeptidase angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) enhances presentation of certain endogenously synthesized peptides to major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I-restricted cytotoxic T lymphocytes. ACE appears to function only in an intracellular secretory compartment of antigen-presenting cells. ACE-enhanced antigen presentation requires the expression of the putative antigenic peptide transporters, TAP1 and TAP2. These findings demonstrate that a protease can influence the processing of endogenously synthesized antigens and strongly suggest that longer peptides can be transported from the cytosol to a secretory compartment where trimming of antigenic peptides to the lengths preferred by MHC class I molecules can occur if the appropriate protease is present.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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