NLRC5: a newly discovered MHC class I transactivator (CITA) Academic Article uri icon


  • Major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I and class II are crucial for the function of the human adaptive immune system. An NLR protein, CIITA (MHC class II transactivator), is a master regulator of MHC class II gene expression as well as of some of the genes involved in MHC class II antigen presentation. It has recently been discovered that another member of the NLR protein family, NLRC5, transcriptionally activates MHC class I genes, and thus acts as "CITA" (MHC class I transactivator), a counterpart to CIITA. In addition to MHC class I genes, NLRC5 can induce the expression of β2M, TAP1 and LMP2, essential components of MHC class I antigen presentation. These findings indicate that NLRC5 and CIITA are transcriptional regulators that orchestrate the concerted expression of critical components in the MHC class I and MHC class II pathways, respectively.

altmetric score

  • 5

author list (cited authors)

  • Meissner, T. B., Li, A., & Kobayashi, K. S.

citation count

  • 49

publication date

  • December 2011