Antigen presentation by CD1 molecules and the generation of lipid-specific T cell immunity

G. Bricard, S. A. Porcelli

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

38 Scopus citations


It is now well demonstrated that the repertoire of T cells includes not only cells that recognize specific MHC-presented peptide antigens, but also cells that recognize specific self and foreign lipid antigens. This T cell recognition of lipid antigens is mediated by a family of conserved MHC class I-like cell surface glycoproteins known as CD1 molecules. These are specialized antigen-presenting molecules that directly bind a wide variety of lipids and present them for T cell recognition at the surface of antigen-presenting cells. Distinct populations of T cells exist that recognize CD1-presented lipids of microbial, environmental or self origin, and these T cells participate in immune responses associated with infectious, neoplastic, autoimmune and allergic diseases. Here we review the current knowledge of the biology of the CD1 system, including the structure, biosynthesis and trafficking of CD1 molecules, the structures of defined lipid antigens and the types of functional responses mediated by T cells specific for CD1-presented lipids.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1824-1840
Number of pages17
JournalCellular and Molecular Life Sciences
Issue number14
StatePublished - Jul 2007


  • Adaptive immunity
  • Antigen presentation
  • CD1
  • Galactosylceramide
  • Glycolipid
  • Lipid
  • Phospholipid
  • T cell

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Pharmacology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Cell Biology


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