Objectives: High-risk human papillomaviruses (HPVs) are the major causative agents of cervical cancer, and the E6 and E7 genes encode the major HPV oncoproteins. The E7 protein of high-risk HPV types disturbs cell cycle control and down-regulates components of the antigen presentation pathway, suggesting a role for E7 in tumor immune evasion. We previously reported that HPV-16 E7 expression and down-regulation of HLA class I was highly correlated in cervical lesions. This study was aimed to determine whether HPV-16 E7 oncoprotein could down-regulate surface HLA class I antigen in HPV-16 E7-transfected cells, and whether it had correlation with the expression of the transporter associated with antigen processing (TAP).
Methods: The HPV-16 E7 open reading frame was transfected into HaCaT cells. After G418 selection, resistant colonies were individually picked and expanded into clonal cell lines. Using the fluoresence-activated cell sorting analysis, the levels of cell surface HLA class I antigen and intracellular TAP-1 and TAP-2 expressions were detected.
Results Compared with the empty vector control, a statistical significant decrease of approximately 50% in cell surface HLA class I expression was observed in HPV-16 E7 expressing HaCaT cells (P < 0.001). Moreover, the expression of HPV-16 E7 in HaCaT cells resulted in decreased expression of TAP-1 that was essential for HLA class I expression at the cell surface, a statistical significant decrease of approximately 40% compared with that with the empty vector control (P < 0.001).
Conclusions: Our finding demonstrates that HPV-16 E7 down-regulates surface HLA class I antigen, which in part correlates with the decrease of TAP-1.
- HPV-16 E7
- HLA class I
- Cervical cancer
- HaCaT cell
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This work was supported by the grants from the National Natural Science Foundation Projects (No. 30672010).
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