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Natural Spleen Cell Ligandome in Transporter Antigen Processing-Deficient Mice

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posted on 2019-08-06, 13:07 authored by Elena Lorente, Concepción Palomo, Eilon Barnea, Carmen Mir, Margarita del Val, Arie Admon, Daniel López
Peptides generated by proteases in the cytosol must be translocated to endoplasmic reticulum lumen by the transporter associated with antigen processing (TAP) prior to their assembly with major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I molecules. Nonfunctional TAP complexes produce a drastic decrease of the MHC class I/peptide complexes presented on the cell surface. Previously, the cellular MHC class I ligandome from TAP-deficient cell lines was determined, but similar analysis from normal tissues remains incomplete. Using high-throughput mass spectrometry to analyze the MHC-bound peptide pools isolated from ex vivo spleen cells of TAP-deficient mice, we identified 210 TAP-independent ligands naturally presented by murine MHC class I molecules. This ligandome showed increased peptide lengths, presence of multiple nested set peptides, and low theoretical MHC binding affinity. The gene ontology enrichment analysis of parental proteins of this TAP-independent subligandome showed almost exclusively enrichment in tissue-specific biological processes related to the immune system as would be expected. Also, cellular components of the extracellular space (namely proteins outside the cell but still within the organism excluding the extracellular matrix) were specifically associated with TAP-independent antigen processing from these ex vivo mice cells. In addition, functional protein association network analysis revealed low protein–protein interactions between parental proteins from the TAP-independent ligandome. Finally, predominant endoproteolytic peptidase specificity for Leu/Phe residues in the P1 position of the scissile bond at both ligand termini was found for the ex vivo TAP-independent ligands. These data indicate that the TAP-independent ligandome from ex vivo cells derives from a more diverse collection of both endoprotease activities and parental proteins and where the cell origin and contribution of the extracellular environment are more relevant than in its equivalent cell lines.