Research ArticleImmunology

Diacylglycerol kinase ζ limits the polarized recruitment of diacylglycerol-enriched organelles to the immune synapse in T cells

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Science Signaling  20 Dec 2016:
Vol. 9, Issue 459, pp. ra127
DOI: 10.1126/scisignal.aaf7714

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Imaging T cell activation

When an antigen-presenting cell engages the T cell receptor (TCR) of a T cell, an immune synapse forms between the cells. The lipid diacylglycerol (DAG) accumulates in the T cell plasma membrane at the immune synapse. Using a fluorescent sensor, Andrada et al. imaged DAG generation and the movement of DAG-enriched organelles toward the immune synapse in T cells stimulated with antigens of different strengths (TCR binding affinities). Although all antigens stimulated an initial generation of DAG at the immune synapse, only the highest affinity antigen triggered the movement of DAG-enriched organelles. The TCR-stimulated activity of the enzyme DGKζ, which converts DAG to phosphatidic acid, was also required for full T cell polarization. Together, these data suggest that the DAG signaling gradient interprets TCR signal strength to ensure appropriate T cell activation.

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