The major histocompatibility complex class Ib molecule HLA-E at the interface between innate and adaptive immunity

Lucy C Sullivan, Craig Steven Clements, Jamie Rossjohn, Andrew Brooks

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

108 Citations (Scopus)


The non-classical major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I molecule human leucocyte antigen (HLA)-E is the least polymorphic of all the MHC class I molecules and acts as a ligand for receptors of both the innate and the adaptive immune systems. The recognition of self-peptides complexed to HLA-E by the CD94-NKG2A receptor expressed by natural killer (NK) cells represents a crucial checkpoint for immune surveillance by NK cells. However, HLA-E can also be recognised by the T-cell receptor expressed by alphabeta CD8 T cells and therefore can play a role in the adaptive immune response to invading pathogens. The recent resolution of HLA-E in complex with both innate and adaptive ligands has provided insight into the dual role of this molecule in immunity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)415 - 424
Number of pages10
JournalTissue Antigens
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2008

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