Viral interference with MHC class I antigen presentation pathway: The battle continues

Aruna P.N. Ambagala, Joyce C. Solheim, Subramaniam Srikumaran

Research output: Contribution to journalShort surveypeer-review

48 Scopus citations


CD8+ cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTLs) play a critical role in the defense against viral infections. In general, CD8+ CTLs recognize antigenic peptides in the context of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I molecule. The MHC class I molecules are expressed on almost all the nucleated cells in the body. The trimolecular complex consisting of the class I heavy chain, β2-microglobulin and the peptide are generated by the MHC class I antigen presentation pathway. This pathway is designed to sample the intracellular milieu and present the information to the CTLs trafficking the area. This rigorous sampling of intracellular environment enables the CTLs to quickly identify and eliminate the cells that synthesize non-self proteins as a result of a viral infection. Many viruses, including several viruses of veterinary importance, have evolved astounding strategies to interfere with the MHC class I antigen presentation pathway, as a means of evading the CTL response of the host. This review focuses on the diverse mechanisms of viral evasion of the MHC class I antigen presentation pathway with particular emphasis on viruses of veterinary importance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-15
Number of pages15
JournalVeterinary Immunology and Immunopathology
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Aug 15 2005


  • Antigen presentation
  • Evasion
  • MHC class I
  • Review
  • Virus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • General Veterinary


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