Volume 3, Number 3—September 1997
MHC and Infectious Diseases
To the Editor: The review on the importance of the https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/eid/article/3/1/97-0105_article (Emerg Infect Dis 1997;3:41-9) failed to mention the potential role of human leukocyte antigen (HLA)-DM in conferring susceptibility to infectious diseases. HLA-DM is an MHC class II-like molecule essential for normal antigen processing and presentation (1). HLA-DM has been shown to function as a peptide editor, in that it influences the repertoire of peptides bound to HLA-DR. Furthermore, this influence occurs in an allele-specific fashion (2). In addition, HLA-DM polymorphisms have been reported to confer an increased relative risk for such varied entities as rheumatoid arthritis (3), kidney transplant rejection (4), and membranous nephropathy (5). Since HLA-DM is important in determining which peptides are immunogenic, it may be as important as MHC class II molecules in regulating the immune response and therefore in conferring susceptibility to infectious diseases.
- Busch R, Mellins ED. Developing and shedding inhibitions: how MHC class II molecules reach maturity. Curr Opin Immunol. 1996;8:51–8.
- Sloan VS, Zaller DM. Allelic specificity of the influence of HLA-DM on peptide repertoire. Arthritis Rheum. 1996;39:S310.
- Pinet V, Combe B, Avinens O, Caillat-Zucman S, Sany J, Clot J, Polymorphism of the HLA-DMA and HLA-DMB genes in rheumatoid arthritis. Arthritis Rheum. 1997;40:854–8.
- Chevrier D, Giral M, Bignon JD, Muller JY, Soulillou JP. Impact of the "new" MHC-encoded genes (HLA-DMA, -DMB and LMP2) on kidney graft outcome. Hum Immunol. 1996;47:O717.
- Giral M, Chevrier D, Muller JY, Bignon JD, Soulillou JP. TAP1*0201 and HLA-DMA*0103 markers and severe forms of membranous nephropathy. Hum Immunol 1996;47:0140.