Evidence for multiple sites of interaction in C3 for complement receptor type 2 (C3d/EBV receptor, CD21)

Eur J Immunol. 1991 Nov;21(11):2829-38. doi: 10.1002/eji.1830211126.


Multivalent but not monovalent CR2 ligands are required to elicit Raji cell proliferation as well as other B cell responses. It has been reported (C. Servis and J. D. Lambris, J. Immunol. 1989. 142: 2207) that the tetrameric peptide T-(C31202-1214)4, which represents the CR2-binding site in C3d, was able to support Raji cell growth. We show here that the tetrameric peptide T-(gp350(19-30)4, which contains the CR2-binding site in gp350 protein of EBV also induces Raji cell growth and this effect is inhibited by the monomeric peptides gp350(19-30) and C3(1201-1214). We also investigated the nature of the interaction between C3 fragment and CR2 in order to explain the Raji cell growth-supporting effect exerted by C3. The following findings suggest that there are multiple sites in the C3 molecule able to interact with CR2: (1) both C3c and C3d immobilized on microspheres are able to bind to Raji cells through CR2. (2) soluble C3d inhibits to a greater extent the binding of CR2 to fixed C3d than to fixed C3b, which suggests the existence of additional CR2-binding sites within C3b not present in the C3d portion of the molecule; (3) synthetic peptides C3(1187-1214), C3(741-757) and C3(295-307) which represents regions of similarity in the C3 molecule bind specifically to CR2 on Raji cells and compete with each other for binding to the receptor and (4) preincubation of microtiter plate-fixed C3b with monoclonal or polyclonal anti-peptide antibodies (C3-9, anti-C3(727-768) recognize the N terminus of the alpha chain of C3 (including residues 741-757) inhibited CR2 binding. Therefore, these data suggest that the N terminus of the alpha chain of C3 is involved in binding to CR2.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Antigens, Differentiation, B-Lymphocyte / metabolism
  • Binding Sites
  • Cell Division
  • Complement C3 / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Ligands
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Peptides / chemistry
  • Peptides / metabolism
  • Protein Binding
  • Receptors, Complement / metabolism*
  • Receptors, Complement 3d
  • Sequence Alignment
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured / cytology


  • Antigens, Differentiation, B-Lymphocyte
  • Complement C3
  • Ligands
  • Peptides
  • Receptors, Complement
  • Receptors, Complement 3d