MHC class I transactivator NLRC5 in host immunity, cancer and beyond

Immunology. 2021 Mar;162(3):252-261. doi: 10.1111/imm.13235. Epub 2020 Aug 3.


The presentation of antigenic peptides by major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I and class II molecules is crucial for activation of the adaptive immune system. The nucleotide-binding domain and leucine-rich repeat receptor family members CIITA and NLRC5 function as the major transcriptional activators of MHC class II and class I gene expression, respectively. Since the identification of NLRC5 as the master regulator of MHC class I and class-I-related genes, there have been major advances in understanding the function of NLRC5 in infectious diseases and cancer. Here, we discuss the biological significance and mechanism of NLRC5-dependent MHC class I expression.

Keywords: cancer immune evasion; class I transactivator; major histocompatibility complex class I; regulatory factor X.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adaptive Immunity*
  • Animals
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Histocompatibility Antigens Class I / genetics
  • Histocompatibility Antigens Class I / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Inflammasomes / genetics
  • Inflammasomes / metabolism*
  • Intracellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins / genetics
  • Intracellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins / metabolism*
  • Neoplasms / genetics
  • Neoplasms / immunology
  • Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Signal Transduction
  • Trans-Activators / metabolism*
  • Tumor Escape
  • Tumor Microenvironment


  • Histocompatibility Antigens Class I
  • Inflammasomes
  • Intracellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins
  • NLRC5 protein, human
  • Trans-Activators