MHC Molecule Structure, Function, and Inheritance

For Immunology Chapter 8 Day 1

  1. Compare and contrast the structures of the MHC Class I and Class II molecules. (Include descriptions of overall structure with particular focus on domains and peptide-binding grooves.)
  2. Compare and contrast peptide binding to the grooves of MHC Class I and Class II molecules. (Include information like peptide length, anchor residues, and hydrogen bonding.)  What does it mean that MHC molecules are “promiscuous”?
  3. What sorts of genes will you find in MHC loci?
  4. MHC genes are (usually) inherited in linked groups called haplotypes. What does this mean?  Compare and contrast what it means for an MHC locus to be syngeneic or congenic.
  5. Would a skin graft be successful if the donor was one of the parental strains and the recipient was from the F1 generation? How about the reverse of that situation? (View figure 8.10a for this question.)
  6. What does it mean that there are many allotypes at the MCH loci in the human population? The figure below shows where amino acid substitutions commonly occur when comparing different human MHC alleles.  What is the significance of the location of these substitutions? (View figure 8.12b for this question.)
  7. Although the number of MHC I allotypes exceeds the number of MCH II allotypes in the human population, why is the diversity of MHC II molecules larger than that of MHC I molecules?

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