A tricyclic ring system replaces the variable regions of peptides presented by three alleles of human MHC class I molecules.
BACKGROUND: Cytotoxic T-lymphocytes (CTLs) recognize complexes of short peptides with major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I molecules. MHC molecules are polymorphic, and the products of different MHC alleles bind to different subsets of peptides. This is due to differences in the shape of the peptide-binding groove on the surface of the MHC protein, especially the 'pockets' into which anchor residues at each end of the peptide fit. Non-peptidic ligands for class I molecules may be useful clinically.
RESULTS: By applying computer-aided design methods guided by X-ray structures, we designed and synthesized several MHC class I ligands, based on known peptide ligands, in which the tricyclic, aromatic compound phenanthridine replaced the central amino acids of the peptides. These semi-peptidic fluorescent ligands bound with high affinity and with allelic specificity to the peptide-binding groove of different MHC class I molecules, forming crystallizable complexes.
CONCLUSIONS: Specificity for binding to different MHC class I molecules can be imparted to the common phenanthridine element by judicious choice of terminal peptidic elements from either nonamer or decamer peptides. The phenanthridine-based ligands have a long bound half-life, as do antigenic peptides.
|Year of Publication