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Nature. 1992 Feb 13;355(6361):647-9.

Ham-2 corrects the class I antigen-processing defect in RMA-S cells.

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Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Medical College of Virginia, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond 23298-0678.


The murine major histocompatibility complex (MHC) contains two genes (Ham-1 and Ham-2) that encode members of a super-family of ATP-dependent transport proteins. These genes are believed to mediate the transport of peptide antigen from the cytoplasm into the lumen of the endoplasmic reticulum for binding by MHC class I molecules. Evidence for such a function has come from the rescue of class I surface expression by a cloned copy of the human homologue of Ham-1, PSF-1, in a human cell line that is defective in antigen processing. A mutant murine cell line, RMA-S, has an identical antigen-processing-defective phenotype. Here we show that expression of a cloned copy of the Ham-2 gene in RMA-S cells results in recovery of the ability to process and present class I-restricted antigens to cytotoxic T lymphocytes, and in partial recovery of class I surface expression. Processing defects for classical (H-2 K and D) and non-classical (Qa1 and HMT) class I molecules are corrected by Ham-2. These data indicate that both MHC-linked transporter genes are probably required for class I antigen processing, and that the functional transporter in this pathway may consist of a Ham-1/Ham-2 heterodimer.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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