Mouse norovirus infection reduces the surface expression of major histocompatibility complex class i proteins and inhibits CD8+ T cell recognition and activation

Svenja Fritzlar, Sinthujan Jegaskanda, Turgut Esad Aktepe, Julia Emiley Prier, Lauren Elise Holz, Peter A. White, Jason M. Mackenzie

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4 Citations (Scopus)


Human noroviruses are highly infectious single-stranded RNA (ssRNA) viruses and the major cause of nonbacterial gastroenteritis worldwide. With the discovery of murine norovirus (MNV) and the introduction of an effective model for norovirus infection and replication, knowledge about infection mechanisms and their impact on the host immune response has progressed. A major player in the immune response against viral infections is the group of major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I proteins, which present viral antigen to immune cells. We have observed that MNV interferes with the antigen presentation pathway in infected cells by reducing the surface expression of MHC class I proteins. We have shown that MNV-infected dendritic cells or macrophages have lower levels of surface expression of MHC class I proteins than uninfected and bystander cells. Transcriptional analysis revealed that this defect is not due to a decreased amount of mRNA but is reflected at the protein level. We have determined that this defect is mediated via the MNV NS3 protein. Significantly, treatment of MNV-infected cells with the endocytic recycling inhibitor dynasore completely restored the surface expression of MHC class I proteins, whereas treatment with the proteasome inhibitor MG132 partly restored such expression. These observations indicate a role for endocytic recycling and proteasome-mediated degradation of these proteins. Importantly, we show that due to the reduced surface expression of MHC class I proteins, antigen presentation is inhibited, resulting in the inability of CD8+ T cells to become activated in the presence of MNV-infected cells.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere00286
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Virology
Issue number18
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Antigen presentation
  • CD8 T cells
  • Immune evasion
  • MHC I protein
  • Mouse norovirus

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