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Cambridge Immunology Network



Supervisors: Louise Boyle and John Trowsdale

In order to protect the human body against infection and cancer, the human immune system has created a group of molecules which are able to communicate to the human body what is happening in a cell. If a cell is infected by a pathogen or undergoes transformation into a tumor cell, these Major Histocompatibility Complex molecules (MHC) alarm patrolling cells which kill the infected cells. This pathway is also responsible for rejection of transplanted organs and plays an important role in autoimmunity. Therefore, it been investigated for many years. Only recently, a novel molecule has been identified by Louise Boyle which has an effect on the shape of MHC class I molecules at the cell surface and thereby influences immune recognition. The aim of my research project is to analyse the shape of this novel molecule and to identify the molecules it interacts with.


Key publications: 

Hermann C, Strittmatter LM, Deane JE, Boyle LH. The Binding of TAPBPR and Tapasin to MHC Class I Is Mutually Exclusive. 
J Immunol. 2013 Oct 25. PMID: 24163410

Boyle LH, Hermann C, Boname JM, Porter KM, Patel PA, Burr ML, Duncan LM, Harbour ME, Rhodes DA, Skjødt K, Lehner PJ, Trowsdale J. Tapasin-related protein TAPBPR is an additional component of the MHC class I presentation pathway. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2013 Feb 26;110(9):3465-70. 

Sobiesiak M, Sivasubramaniyan K, Hermann C, Tan C, Orgel M, Treml S, Cerabona F, de Zwart P, Ochs U, Müller CA, Gargett CE, Kalbacher H, Bühring HJ. The mesenchymal stem cell antigen MSCA-1 is identical to tissue non-specific alkaline phosphatase.  Stem Cells Dev. 2010 May;19(5):669-77.

Zaidi N, Hermann C, Herrmann T, Kalbacher H. Emerging functional roles of cathepsin E. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2008 Dec 12;377(2):327-30. Epub 2008 Oct 18. Review.

 Clemens  Hermann
Not available for consultancy


Person keywords: 
mass spectrometry
antigen processing
cell culture
protein purification
confocal microscopy
recombinant protein expression
antigen presentation
X-ray crystallography