HLA-DO as the Optimizer of Epitope Selection for MHC Class II Antigen Presentation

Yuri O. Poluektov, Ae Ryon Kim, Isamu Z. Hartman, Scheherazade Sadegh-Nasseri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Processing of antigens for presentation to helper T cells by MHC class II involves HLA-DM (DM) and HLA-DO (DO) accessory molecules. A mechanistic understanding of DO in this process has been missing. The leading model on its function proposes that DO inhibits the effects of DM. To directly study DO functions, we designed a recombinant soluble DO and expressed it in insect cells. The kinetics of binding and dissociation of several peptides to HLA-DR1 (DR1) molecules in the presence of DM and DO were measured. We found that DO reduced binding of DR1 to some peptides, and enhanced the binding of some other peptides to DR1. Interestingly, these enhancing and reducing effects were observed in the presence, or absence, of DM. We found that peptides that were negatively affected by DO were DM-sensitive, whereas peptides that were enhanced by DO were DM-resistant. The positive and negative effects of DO could only be measured on binding kinetics as peptide dissociation kinetics were not affected by DO. Using Surface Plasmon Resonance, we demonstrate direct binding of DO to a peptide-receptive, but not a closed conformation of DR1. We propose that DO imposes another layer of control on epitope selection during antigen processing.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere71228
JournalPloS one
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 8 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • General

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