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Immunity. 1997 Jan;6(1):57-66.

A mouse cytomegalovirus glycoprotein retains MHC class I complexes in the ERGIC/cis-Golgi compartments.

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Max von Pettenkofer Institut, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitat, Munchen, Federal Republic of Germany.


The principle by which mouse cytomegalovirus blocks antigen presentation in the MHC class I pathway was investigated. The responsible gene m152, encoding a type I transmembrane glycoprotein of 40 kDa, is a member of a gene family located in the right-hand terminal region of the 230 kb virus genome. Expression of m152 in murine and human cells arrested the export of mouse class I complexes from the ER-Golgi intermediate compartment/cis-Golgi compartment and inhibited lysis by cytotoxic T cells. The plasma membrane transport of human MHC class I molecules was not affected. The deletion of the cytoplasmic tail of gp40 did not lift its effect on class I molecule export, indicating that this protein differs in its functions from known immunosubversive viral gene products and represents a novel principle by which a herpesvirus shuts off MHC class I function.

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