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Nature. 1991 Oct 24;353(6346):762-5.

Structure of domain 1 of rat T lymphocyte CD2 antigen.

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Department of Biochemistry, University of Oxford, UK.


The CD2 antigen is largely restricted to cells of the T-lymphocyte lineage and has been established as an important adhesion molecule in interactions between human T lymphocytes and accessory cells. In the adhesion reaction, CD2 on T cells binds to LFA-3 on other cells, with binding through domain 1 of CD2. CD2 can also be a target for the delivery of mitogenic signals to T lymphocytes cultured with combinations of anti-CD2 antibodies. Two predictions that are contradictory have been made for the structure of CD2 domain 1. One suggests an immunoglobulin (Ig) fold, on the basis of sequence patterns conserved in the Ig-superfamily (IgSF), whilst the other proposes a pattern of alternating alpha-helices and beta-strands, on the basis of secondary structure predictions. Thus CD2 domain 1 is an important test case for the validity of IgSF assignments based on sequence patterns. We report here the expression of domain 1 of rat CD2 in an Escherichia coli expression system and have determined a low-resolution solution structure by NMR spectroscopy.

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