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T-Cell Responses Against Viral and Self-Epitopes and HLA-B27 Subtypes Differentially Associated with Ankylosing Spondylitis

  • María T. Fiorillo
  • Rosa Sorrentino
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (volume 649)

Abstract

HLA-B27 family comprehends some alleles strongly associated with Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS) and some others that are not. A comparative analysis at genetic and functional level is likely to give a clue to the understanding of disease pathogenesis. Here, we summarize our recent studies on the functional differences between B*2705, the most frequent and worldwide AS-associated allele and B*2709, an allele found in Sardinia where it accounts for 20% of all B27 alleles and where it is not associated with AS. The two B27 alleles are distinguished by a single amino acid change, located in the peptide binding groove, that correlates with relevant structural and functional differences in presenting viral and self peptides to T-cells. In particular, B*2709 individuals lack in their T-cell repertoire of CD8+ T-cells specific for a self-epitope (pVIPR) derived from the vasoactive intestinal peptide Type 1 receptor (VPAC1). This peptide shares extensive homology with a viral epitope, pLMP2, derived from EBV, toward which, both B*2705 and B*2709 individuals mount a vigorous CTL response. A likely explanation to this finding, also supported by crystallographic data, is that the autoreactivity present in the disease-prone B*2705 individuals can be unleashed by a molecular mimicry mechanism which does not occur in the B*2709 individuals. The possible implications of the T-cell cross-reactivity between pLMP2, pVIPR and other related peptides in AS pathogenesis are discussed.

Keywords

Ankylose Spondylitis Single Amino Acid Change Peptide Binding Groove Degree Ofsimilarity Molecular Mimicry Mechanism 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Landes Bioscience and Springer Science+Business Media 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • María T. Fiorillo
    • 1
  • Rosa Sorrentino
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Cell Biology and Development, “Sapienza”Università di RomaRomaItaly

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