A small fraction of affinity-purified MHC class II molecules are known to bind antigenic peptides in vitro. No simple method with acceptable recovery exist for separation of complexes of a known antigenic epitope and MHC class II from empty MHC class II and complexes MHC class II and endogenously bound peptide. Here we describe an one step metal chelate affinity chromatography method to purify complexes of MHC class II and antigenic peptide of known composition. Complexes of human HLA-DR2 (DRB1*1501/DRB5*0101) and a peptide analog from human myelin basic protein MBP(84-102) containing a 6 histidine tag (6 × His) and a tyrosine residue at the N-terminus end [6 × His-MBP(83-102)Y83] were prepared and purified. The absence of residual free 6 × His-MBP peptide in the complex preparations were confirmed by gel filtration and TLC analyses. The purified complexes were applied onto Ni2+· nitrilotriacetic acid (Ni2+ · NTA)-agarose affinity support and 6 × His-tagged peptide class II complexes were selectively eluted with imidazole-containing buffer. The quantitation of bound peptides in the eluted complexes showed 100% occupancy of HLA-DR2 (DRB1*1501/DRB5*0101) with [6×His-MBP(83-102)Y83] peptide with recovery of 50-75%. The presence of a single peptide entity in the eluted complexes was confirmed by reverse-phase narrobore HPLC analysis of the acid-extracted supernatant and by amino acid sequencing analyses. As expected, no endogenous polypeptide was detected in the Ni2+·NTA eluted complexes when analyzed by two-dimensional IEF gel electrophoresis. Finally, we demonstrate that both MBP(84-102) and [6 × His-MBP(83-102)Y83] peptides were equally capable of stimulating restricted T cell line in the presence of autologous antigen presenting cells (APCs). These results demonstrate that metal chelate affinity chromatography can be used to prepare MHC class II-peptide complexes containing single peptide. Such complexes of class II molecules containing known have significant clinical relevance for antigen-specific therapy of various autoimmune diseases may provide better understanding of the trimolecular interaction between MHC class II, antigenic peptide and T cell receptors (TRC). © 1994.
Nag, B., Mukku, P. V., Arimilli, S., Kendrick, T., Deshpande, S. V., & Sharma, S. D. (1994). Separation of complexes of major histocompatibility class II molecules and known antigenic peptide by metal chelate affinity chromatography. Journal of Immunological Methods, 169(2), 273–285. https://doi.org/10.1016/0022-1759(94)90271-2