Antigen processing and presentation: TAPping into ABC transporters

Erik Procko, Rachelle Gaudet

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Adaptive, cell-mediated immunity involves the presentation of antigenic peptides on class I MHC molecules at the cell surface. This requires an ABC transporter associated with antigen processing (TAP) to transport antigenic peptides generated in the cytosol into the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) for loading onto class I MHC. Recent crystal structures of bacterial ABC transporters suggest how the transmembrane domains of TAP form a peptide-binding cavity that acquires peptides from the cytosol, and following ATP-induced conformational changes, the peptide-binding cavity closes to the cytosol and instead opens to the ER lumen for peptide release. Extensive biochemical studies show how transport is driven by ATP binding and hydrolysis on an asymmetric pair of cytosolic nucleotide-binding domains, which are physically coupled to the peptide-binding site to propagate conformational changes through the protein.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)84-91
Number of pages8
JournalCurrent Opinion in Immunology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2009
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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