Date of Award

7-13-2009

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Biology

First Advisor

Susanna F. Greer - Chair

Second Advisor

Richard Dix

Third Advisor

Zehava Eichenbaum

Abstract

The ubiquitin-proteasome pathway plays vital roles in multiple cellular processes including protein turnover and transcription regulation. The fate of a ubiquitinated protein is determined by the number of ubiquitin molecules added and the site to which they are added. Monoubiquitinated proteins are stabilized and often activated, while polyubiquitinated proteins are rapidly targeted for degradation. Major histocompatibility complex class II (MHC II) molecules are a vital part of the immune response and are responsible for presenting antigens to CD4+ T cells. The class II transactivator (CIITA) is the master regulator of MHC II transcription and has been shown to have increased transactivity when monoubiquitinated. The focus of this thesis is on the impact of ubiquitination on CIITA stability and MHC II gene expression through the identification of an E3 ligase that targets and ubiquitinates CIITA.

Included in

Biology Commons

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