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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1464;

Structural Elements Recognized by Abacavir-Induced T Cells

Department of Rheumatology, Immunology and Allergology, University Hospital of Bern, 3010 Bern, Switzerland
Harvard Medical School, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA
Department of Pathology, Immunology and Laboratory Medicine, University of Florida College of Medicine, Gainesville, FL 32610, USA
Department of Microbiology and Immunology, University of Copenhagen, 1165 København, Denmark
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 27 April 2017 / Revised: 13 June 2017 / Accepted: 27 June 2017 / Published: 7 July 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Drug Hypersensitivity)
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Adverse drug reactions are one of the leading causes of morbidity and mortality in health care worldwide. Human leukocyte antigen (HLA) alleles have been strongly associated with drug hypersensitivities, and the causative drugs have been shown to stimulate specific T cells at the sites of autoimmune destruction. The structural elements recognized by drug-specific T cell receptors (TCRs) in vivo are poorly defined. Drug-stimulated T cells express TCRs specific for peptide/HLA complexes, but the characteristics of peptides (sequence, or endogenous or exogenous origin) presented in the context of small molecule drugs are not well studied. Using HLA-B*57:01 mediated hypersensitivity to abacavir as a model system, this study examines structural similarities of HLA presented peptides recognized by drug-specific TCRs. Using the crystal structure of HLA-B*57:01 complexed with abacavir and an immunogenic self peptide, VTTDIQVKV SPT5a 976–984, peptide side chains exhibiting flexibility and solvent exposure were identified as potential drug-specific T cell recognition motifs. Viral sequences with structural motifs similar to the immunogenic self peptide were identified. Abacavir-specific T cell clones were used to determine if virus peptides presented in the context of abacavir stimulate T cell responsiveness. An abacavir-specific T cell clone was stimulated by VTQQAQVRL, corresponding to HSV1/2 230–238, in the context of HLA-B*57:01. These data suggest the T cell polyclonal response to abacavir consists of multiple subsets, including T cells that recognize self peptide/HLA-B*57:01 complexes and crossreact with viral peptide/HLA-B*57:01 complexes due to similarity in TCR contact residues. View Full-Text
Keywords: drug hypersensitivity; Human Leukocyte Antigen; crystallography drug hypersensitivity; Human Leukocyte Antigen; crystallography

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Yerly, D.; Pompeu, Y.A.; Schutte, R.J.; Eriksson, K.K.; Strhyn, A.; Bracey, A.W.; Buus, S.; Ostrov, D.A. Structural Elements Recognized by Abacavir-Induced T Cells. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18, 1464.

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