Within cells of their host, many bacteria and parasites inhabit specialized compartments, such as a modified phagosome for Mycobacterium tuberculosis or a parasitophorous vacuole for Toxoplasma gondii. These locations could exclude microbial material from entry into the MHC class I surveillance pathway. Remarkably, however, under these circumstances, cells can still signal the presence of invading pathogens to circulating CD8+ T cells, which typically play a key role in protection against such intracellular organisms. Here, we review MHC I presentation pathways in various contexts, ranging from model antigens in non-infectious settings to pathogen-infected cells. We suggest that presentation of intracellular pathogens can be described as not just one, but several distinct pathways; perhaps because diverse pathogens have evolved different strategies to interact with host cells.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy