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Nat Commun. 2013;4:2142. doi: 10.1038/ncomms3142.

Recognition of vitamin B metabolites by mucosal-associated invariant T cells.

Author information

1
Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, School of Biomedical Sciences, Monash University, Clayton, Victoria 3800, Australia.

Abstract

The mucosal-associated invariant T-cell antigen receptor (MAIT TCR) recognizes MR1 presenting vitamin B metabolites. Here we describe the structures of a human MAIT TCR in complex with human MR1 presenting a non-stimulatory ligand derived from folic acid and an agonist ligand derived from a riboflavin metabolite. For both vitamin B antigens, the MAIT TCR docks in a conserved manner above MR1, thus acting as an innate-like pattern recognition receptor. The invariant MAIT TCR α-chain usage is attributable to MR1-mediated interactions that prise open the MR1 cleft to allow contact with the vitamin B metabolite. Although the non-stimulatory antigen does not contact the MAIT TCR, the stimulatory antigen does. This results in a higher affinity of the MAIT TCR for a stimulatory antigen in comparison with a non-stimulatory antigen. We formally demonstrate a structural basis for MAIT TCR recognition of vitamin B metabolites, while illuminating how TCRs recognize microbial metabolic signatures.

PMID:
23846752
DOI:
10.1038/ncomms3142
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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