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Exit of major histocompatibility complex class II–invariant chain p35 complexes from the endoplasmic reticulum is modulated by phosphorylation

  • Tomomi Kuwana
  • Per A. Peterson
  • Lars Karlsson
The National Academy of Sciences
Publication Date
Feb 03, 1998
  • Biology


The Iip35 isoform of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class II-associated invariant chain (Ii) contains an endoplasmic reticulum (ER) targeting motif, but in B cell lines the ER retention is ineffective and a fraction of Iip35 is transported through the Golgi complex associated with class II molecules. We found Iip35 (but not Iip33, the major form of Ii) to be phosphorylated in B cell lines, as well as in transfected HeLa cells. The phosphorylation of Iip35 was found to be necessary for the exit of Iip35–class II complexes out of the ER. This requirement suggests that phosphorylation may change the interaction with factors responsible for ER retention/retrieval, and we did find that phosphorylated Iip35 associates with 14-3-3 proteins, a family of adaptor proteins that are involved in coordinating signal transduction pathways. This finding raises the intriguing possibility that the exit of Ii–class II complexes from the ER is regulated by intracellular signaling events.

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