Conservation of mucosal associated invariant T (MAIT) cells and the MR1 restriction element in ruminants, and abundance of MAIT cells in spleen
Infection and Immunity Division, The Roslin Institute, Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies, University of Edinburgh, Easter Bush, Roslin, Midlothian EH25 9RG, United Kingdom
2 Department of Infectious Diseases and Immunology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Universiteit Utrecht, Yalelaan 1, 3584CL, Utrecht, The Netherlands
3 Department of Farm Animal Health, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Universiteit Utrecht, Yalelaan 1, 3584CL, Utrecht, The Netherlands
* Corresponding author: email@example.com
Accepted: 27 May 2010
MHC-related protein 1 (MR1) is a highly conserved MHC class I-like molecule. Human and murine mucosal associated invariant T (MAIT) cells are restricted by MR1 and express an invariant T cell receptor. Even though MR1 protein expression on the cell surface has not been demonstrated in vivo or ex vivo, it is assumed that MR1 presents a bacterial antigen from the intestinal lumen to MAIT cells because MAIT cells are present in the lamina propria and their expansion is dependent on the presence of intestinal micro flora. The existence of bovine MAIT cells and MR1 has been demonstrated recently although ovine MAIT cells and MR1 have not yet been described. We cloned bovine and ovine MR1 transcripts, including splice variants, and identified an anti human MR1 antibody that recognizes cells transfected with the bovine homolog. Using this antibody, no MR1 staining was detected using cells freshly isolated from blood, thymus, spleen, colon, ileum, and lymph node. MAIT cells are known to be enriched in the CD4/CD8 double negative peripheral blood T cell population, but their relative abundance in different tissues is not known. Comparison of the amount of MAIT cell-specific TCR transcript to the amount of constant α chain transcript revealed that numbers of MAIT cells are low in neonates and increase by 3-weeks of age. In 3-month old animals, MAIT cells are abundant in spleen and less so in ileum, peripheral blood, lymph node, colon, and thymus.
Key words: MR1 / ruminant / T cell receptor / mucosal immunology / non-classical MHC
© The authors, published by INRA/EDP Sciences, 2010
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