Immunosuppressive effects of polyunsaturated fatty acids on antigen presentation by human leukocyte antigen class I molecules.

Shaikh SR, Edidin M
Source: J Lipid Res
Publication Date: (2007)
Issue: 48(1): 127-38
Research Area:
Immunotherapy / Hematology
Basic Research
Cells used in publication:
B-cell lymphoma cell line
Species: human
Tissue Origin:
Dietary supplementation with polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) has immunosuppressive effects; however, the molecular targets of PUFAs and their mode of action remain unclear. One possible target is antigen presentation to T cells through the human leukocyte antigen (HLA) class I pathway. Here we show that incorporation of PUFAs lowers target cell susceptibility to lysis by effector T cells. Treatment of B lymphoblast targets with the omega-6 PUFA arachidonic acid (AA) or omega-3 docosahexaenoic acid lowered their susceptibility to lysis by alloreactive CD8+ T cells by approximately 20-25%. HLA class I surface levels and their rate of endoplasmic reticulum (ER)-Golgi traffic were also reduced by PUFA treatment. Calibration experiments showed that the approximately 15% reduction in surface HLA I was not sufficient to completely account for the decreased lysis. However, PUFAs significantly lowered antigen-presenting cell-T cell conjugate formation, by approximately 30-40%. Taken together, our data show for the first time that an omega-6 and an omega-3 PUFA affect the HLA class I pathway of B lymphoblasts. Our findings suggest that elimination of self- and pathogen-derived peptides by effectors may be compromised by dietary PUFA supplementation. In addition, PUFA-mediated changes in ER-Golgi trafficking point to a new area of PUFA modulation of immune responses.