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Critical role of endoplasmic reticulum aminopeptidase 1 in determining the length and sequence of peptides bound and presented by HLA-B27

Record type: Article


HLA–B27 and endoplasmic reticulum aminopeptidase 1 (ERAP1) are the two strongest genetic factors predisposing to ankylosing spondylitis (AS). A key aminopeptidase in class I major histocompatibility complex presentation, ERAP1 potentially contributes to the pathogenesis of AS by altering HLA–B27 peptide presentation. The aim of this study was to analyze the effects of ERAP1 on the HLA–B27 peptide repertoire and peptide presentation to cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTLs).


ERAP1-silenced and -competent HeLa.B27 and C1R.B27 cells were isotope-labeled, mixed, lysed, and then immunoprecipitated using W6/32 or ME1 antibodies. Peptides bound to HLA–B27 were eluted and analyzed by tandem mass spectrometry. Selected peptides were synthesized and tested for HLA–B27 binding ability. The effect of ERAP1 silencing/mutation on presentation of an immunodominant viral HLA–B27 epitope, KK10, to CTLs was also studied.


In both HeLa.B27 and C1R.B27 cells, the proportion of 9-mer HLA–B27–bound peptides was decreased by ERAP1 silencing, whereas the percentages of longer peptides (11–13 mer) were increased. Surprisingly, following ERAP1 silencing, C-terminally extended peptides were readily identified. These were better able to bind to HLA–B27 than were N-terminally extended peptides lacking an arginine at position 2. In both HeLa.B27 cells and mouse fibroblasts expressing HLA–B27, the absence of ERAP1 reduced peptide recognition by HLA–B27–restricted KK10-specific CTLs following infection with recombinant vaccinia virus or transfection with minigenes expressing KK10 precursors. Presence of an AS-protective variant of ERAP1, K528R, as compared to wild-type ERAP1, reduced the peptide recognition by KK10 CTLs following transfection with extended KK10 minigenes.


These results show that ERAP1 directly alters peptide binding and presentation by HLA–B27, thus demonstrating a potential pathogenic mechanism in AS. Inhibition of ERAP1 could potentially be used for treatment of AS and other ERAP1-associated diseases.

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Chen, Liye, Fischer, Roman, Peng, Yanchun, Reeves, Emma, McHugh, Kirsty, Ternette, Nicola, Hanke, Tomas, Dong, Tao, Elliott, Tim, Shastri, Nilabh, Kollnberger, Simon, James, Edward, Kessler, Benedikt and Bowness, Paul (2014) Critical role of endoplasmic reticulum aminopeptidase 1 in determining the length and sequence of peptides bound and presented by HLA-B27 Arthritis & Rheumatology, 66, (2), pp. 284-294. (doi:10.1002/art.38249). (PMID:24504800).

More information

e-pub ahead of print date: 27 January 2014
Published date: February 2014
Organisations: Cancer Sciences


Local EPrints ID: 384904
ISSN: 2326-5205
PURE UUID: 7ae391c7-ce1e-4c1a-a8a7-0705a38101a6
ORCID for Tim Elliott: ORCID iD

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Date deposited: 17 Dec 2015 16:58
Last modified: 17 Jul 2017 20:01

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Author: Liye Chen
Author: Roman Fischer
Author: Yanchun Peng
Author: Emma Reeves
Author: Kirsty McHugh
Author: Nicola Ternette
Author: Tomas Hanke
Author: Tao Dong
Author: Tim Elliott ORCID iD
Author: Nilabh Shastri
Author: Simon Kollnberger
Author: Edward James
Author: Benedikt Kessler
Author: Paul Bowness

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