Intracellular assembly and transport of endogenous peptide-MHC class II complexes

Alexander Y. Rudensky, Maja Marič, Susan Eastman, Lee Shoemaker, Paul C. DeRoos, Janice S. Blum

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

112 Scopus citations


To define the intracellular site of assembly of endogenous peptide-MHC class II complexes, an immunochemical approach was undertaken employing a monoclonal antibody specific for an endogenous peptide-class II complex in combination with subcellular fractionation. Here, we show that newly synthesized MHC class II molecules, upon exit from the Golgi, are delivered into a dense endocytic compartment (MIIC) distinct from late endosomes and lysosomes. Endogenous peptide-class II complexes are initially formed in this compartment and subsequently traffic through late endosomal vesicles prior to cell surface expression. Exogenous antigen delivered via immunoglobulin receptors is targeted to MIIC en route to lysosomes after passing through early and late endosomes. Processing of an endocytosed antigen was observed in this compartment. Our results suggest a specific role for MIIC in the processing of endogenous and exogenous proteins as well as the assembly of peptide-MHC class II complexes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)585-594
Number of pages10
Issue number7
StatePublished - Oct 1994
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Infectious Diseases

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