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A new role for complement C3: regulation of antigen processing through an inhibitory activity.

Abstract : Increasing evidence underlines the involvement of complement component C3 in the establishment of acquired immunity which appears to play a complex role and to act at different levels. As antigen proteolysis by antigen presenting cells is a key event in the control of antigen presentation efficiency, and consequently in the quality of the immune response, we investigated whether C3 could modulate this step. Our results demonstrate for the first time that C3 can interfere with antigen proteolysis: (i) proteolysis of tetanus toxin (TT) by the lysosomal fraction from a human monocytic cell line (U937) is impaired in the presence of C3, (ii) this effect is C3-specific and involves the C3c fragment of the protein, (iii) C3c is effective even after disulfide disruption, but none of its three constitutive peptides is individually accountable for this inhibitory effect and (iv) the target-protease(s) exhibit(s) a serine-protease activity. The physiological relevance of our results is demonstrated by experiments showing a subcellular colocalisation of TT and C3 after their uptake by U937 and the reduction of TT proteolysis once internalised together with C3. These results highlight a novel role for C3 that broadens its capacity to modulate acquired immune response.
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Submitted on : Monday, October 6, 2008 - 6:15:41 PM
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Christian Villiers, François Cretin, Nicole Lefebvre, Patrice Marche, Marie-Bernadette Villiers. A new role for complement C3: regulation of antigen processing through an inhibitory activity.. Molecular Immunology, Elsevier, 2008, 45 (13), pp.3509-16. ⟨10.1016/j.molimm.2008.05.015⟩. ⟨inserm-00324973⟩



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