Core fucosylation of the T cell receptor is required for T cell activation

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CD4+ T cell activation promotes the pathogenic process of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). T cell receptor (TCR) complex are highly core fucosylated glycoproteins, which play important roles in T cell activation. In this study, we found that the core fucosylation of CD4+ T cells was significantly increased in SLE patients. Loss of core fucosyltransferase (Fut8), the sole enzyme for catalyzing the core fucosylation of N-glycan, significantly reduced CD4+ T cell activation and ameliorated the experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis-induced syndrome in Fut8-/- mice. T cell activation with OVA323-339 loaded major histocompatibility complex II (pMHC-II) on B cell was dramatically attenuated in Fut8-/-OT-II CD4+ T cells compared with Fut8+/+OT-II CD4+ T cells. Moreover, the phosphorylation of ZAP-70 was significantly reduced in Fut8+/+OT-II CD4+ T cells by the treatment of fucosidase. Our results suggest that core fucosylation is required for efficient TCR-pMHC-II contacts in CD4+ T cell activation, and hyper core fucosylation may serve as a potential novel biomarker in the sera from SLE patients.




Liang, W., Mao, S., Sun, S., Li, M., Li, Z., Yu, R., … Li, W. (2018). Core fucosylation of the T cell receptor is required for T cell activation. Frontiers in Immunology, 9(JAN).

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