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T Cell Priming by Activated Nlrc5-Deficient Dendritic Cells Is Unaffected despite Partially Reduced MHC Class I Levels.
Journal of Immunology
NLRC5, a member of the NOD-like receptor (NLR) protein family, has recently been characterized as the master transcriptional regulator of MHCI molecules in lymphocytes, in which it is highly expressed. However, its role in activated dendritic cells (DCs), which are instrumental to initiate T cell responses, remained elusive. We show in this study that, following stimulation of DCs with inflammatory stimuli, not only did NLRC5 level increase, but also its importance in directing MHCI transcription. Despite markedly reduced mRNA and intracellular H2-K levels, we unexpectedly observed nearly normal H2-K surface display in Nlrc5(-/-) DCs. Importantly, this discrepancy between a strong intracellular and a mild surface defect in H2-K levels was observed also in DCs with H2-K transcription defects independent of Nlrc5. Hence, alongside with demonstrating the importance of NLRC5 in MHCI transcription in activated DCs, we uncover a general mechanism counteracting low MHCI surface expression. In agreement with the decreased amount of neosynthesized MHCI, Nlrc5(-/-) DCs exhibited a defective capacity to display endogenous Ags. However, neither T cell priming by endogenous Ags nor cross-priming ability was substantially affected in activated Nlrc5(-/-) DCs. Altogether, these data show that Nlrc5 deficiency, despite significantly affecting MHCI transcription and Ag display, is not sufficient to hinder T cell activation, underlining the robustness of the T cell priming process by activated DCs.
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