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Blood. 2006 May 1;107(9):3779-86. Epub 2006 Jan 3.

The PANE1 gene encodes a novel human minor histocompatibility antigen that is selectively expressed in B-lymphoid cells and B-CLL.

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  • 1Department of Medicine, Unviersity of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute, PA, USA.


Minor histocompatibility antigens (mHAg's) are peptides encoded by polymorphic genes that are presented by major histocompatibility complex (MHC) molecules and recognized by T cells in recipients of allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplants. Here we report that an alternative transcript of the proliferation-associated nuclear element 1 (PANE1) gene encodes a novel human leukocyte antigen (HLA)-A(*)0301-restricted mHAg that is selectively expressed in B-lymphoid cells. The antigenic peptide is entirely encoded within a unique exon not present in other PANE1 transcripts. Sequencing of PANE1 alleles in mHAg-positive and mHAg-negative cells demonstrates that differential T-cell recognition is due to a single nucleotide polymorphism within the variant exon that replaces an arginine codon with a translation termination codon. The PANE1 transcript that encodes the mHAg is expressed at high levels in resting CD19(+) B cells and B-lineage chronic lymphocytic leukemia (B-CLL) cells, and at significantly lower levels in activated B cells. Activation of B-CLL cells through CD40 ligand (CD40L) stimulation decreases expression of the mHAg-encoding PANE1 transcript and reciprocally increases expression of PANE1 transcripts lacking the mHAg-encoding exon. These studies suggest distinct roles for different PANE1 isoforms in resting compared with activated CD19(+) cells, and identify PANE1 as a potential therapeutic target in B-CLL.

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