Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

To circumvent pathology caused by infectious microbes and tumor growth, the host immune system must constantly clear harmful microorganisms and potentially malignant transformed cells. This task is accomplished in part by T-cells, which can directly kill infected or tumorigenic cells. A crucial event determining the recognition and elimination of detrimental cells is antigen recognition by the T cell receptor (TCR) expressed on the surface of T cells. Upon binding of the TCR to cognate peptide-MHC complexes presented on the surface of antigen presenting cells (APCs), a specialized supramolecular structure known as the immunological synapse (IS) assembles at the T cell-APC interface. Such a structure involves massive redistribution of membrane proteins, including TCR/pMHC complexes, modulatory receptor pairs, and adhesion molecules. Furthermore, assembly of the immunological synapse leads to intracellular events that modulate and define the magnitude and characteristics of the T cell response. Here, we discuss recent literature on the regulation and assembly of IS and the mechanisms evolved by tumors to modulate its function to escape T cell cytotoxicity, as well as novel strategies targeting the IS for therapy.

Original publication

DOI

10.1155/2013/450291

Type

Journal article

Journal

Clinical and Developmental Immunology

Publication Date

01/2013

Volume

2013

Addresses

Millennium Institute on Immunology and Immunotherapy, Departamento de Genética Molecular y Microbiología, Facultad de Ciencias Biológicas, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Avenida Libertador Bernardo O'Higgins no. 340, Santiago 8331010, Chile.

Keywords

Antigen-Presenting Cells, T-Lymphocytes, Animals, Humans, Neoplasms, Membrane Proteins, Receptors, Antigen, T-Cell, Antigens, Neoplasm, Immunotherapy, Cell Communication, Immunity, Tumor Escape, Solubility, Immunological Synapses