Elke Valk

Cambridge Institute for Medical Research, Cambridge, England, United Kingdom

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Publications (9)62.77 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Despite playing a central role in tolerance, little is known regarding the mechanism by which intracellular CTLA-4 is shuttled from the trans-Golgi netwok (TGN) to the surface of T-cells. In this context, Ras-related GTPase Rab8 plays an important role in the intracellular transport, while we have previously shown that CTLA-4 binds to the immune cell adaptor TRIM in T-cells. In this study, we demonstrate that CTLA-4 forms a multimeric complex comprised of TRIM and related LAX that in turn binds to GTP bound Rab8 for post-Golgi transport to the cell surface. LAX bound via its N-terminus to active GTP-Rab8 as well as the cytoplasmic tail of CTLA-4. TRIM required LAX for binding to Rab8 in a complex. Wild-type LAX or its N-terminus (residues 1-77) increased CTLA-4 surface expression, while siRNAs of Rab8, LAX, or disruption of LAX/Rab8 binding reduced numbers of CTLA-4 containing vesicles and its co-receptor surface expression. LAX also promoted the polarisation of CTLA-4, and the reorientation of the microtubule-organizing center (MTOC) to the site of TCR engagement. Our results identify a novel CTLA-4-TRIM-LAX-Rab8 effector complex in the transport of CTLA-4 to the surface of T-cells.
    Molecular and Cellular Biology 02/2014; · 5.04 Impact Factor
  • Article: Erratum.
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    ABSTRACT: [This corrects the article on p. e3842 in vol. 3, PMID: 19052636.].
    PLoS ONE 02/2009; 4(1). · 3.53 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The T-cell co-receptor cytotoxic T-cell antigen 4 (CTLA-4) has a strong inhibitory role as shown by the lymphoproliferative phenotype of CTLA-4-deficient mice. Despite its potent effects on T-cell function, CTLA-4 is primarily an intracellular antigen whose surface expression is tightly regulated by restricted trafficking to the cell surface and rapid internalisation. Recently, several signalling molecules such as Trim, PLD, ARF-1 and TIRC7 have been described to be involved in the transport of CTLA-4 to the cell surface. Minor changes in surface expression levels have major effects on the outcome of T-cell activation. Optimal regulation of CTLA-4 surface expression is crucial for the balance of stimulatory and inhibitory signals to maximize protective immune responses while maintaining immunological tolerance and preventing autoimmunity.
    Trends in Immunology 07/2008; 29(6):272-9. · 12.03 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The balance of T-cell proliferation, anergy and apoptosis is central to immune function. In this regard, co-receptor CTLA-4 is needed for the induction of anergy and tolerance. One central question concerns the mechanism by which CTLA-4 can induce T-cell non-responsiveness without a concurrent induction of antigen induced cell death (AICD). In this study, we show that CTLA-4 activation of the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI 3-K) and protein kinase B (PKB/AKT) sustains T-cell anergy without cell death. CTLA-4 ligation induced PI 3K activation as evidenced by the phosphorylation of PKB/AKT that in turn inactivated GSK-3. The level of activation was similar to that observed with CD28. CTLA-4 induced PI 3K and AKT activation also led to phosphorylation of the pro-apoptotic factor BAD as well as the up-regulation of BcL-XL. In keeping with this, CD3/CTLA-4 co-ligation prevented apoptosis under the same conditions where T-cell non-responsiveness was induced. This effect was PI 3K and PKB/AKT dependent since inhibition of these enzymes under conditions of anti-CD3/CTLA-4 co-ligation resulted in cell death. Our findings therefore define a mechanism by which CTLA-4 can induce anergy (and possibly peripheral tolerance) by preventing the induction of cell death.
    PLoS ONE 02/2008; 3(12):e3842. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: While the adaptor SKAP-55 mediates LFA-1 adhesion on T-cells, it is not known whether the adaptor regulates other aspects of signaling. SKAP-55 could potentially act as a node to coordinate the modulation of adhesion with downstream signaling. In this regard, the GTPase p21(ras) and the extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) pathway play central roles in T-cell function. In this study, we report that SKAP-55 has opposing effects on adhesion and the activation of the p21(ras) -ERK pathway in T-cells. SKAP-55 deficient primary T-cells showed a defect in LFA-1 adhesion concurrent with the hyper-activation of the ERK pathway relative to wild-type cells. RNAi knock down (KD) of SKAP-55 in T-cell lines also showed an increase in p21(ras) activation, while over-expression of SKAP-55 inhibited activation of ERK and its transcriptional target ELK. Three observations implicated the p21(ras) activating exchange factor RasGRP1 in the process. Firstly, SKAP-55 bound to RasGRP1 via its C-terminus, while secondly, the loss of binding abrogated SKAP-55 inhibition of ERK and ELK activation. Thirdly, SKAP-55-/- primary T-cells showed an increased presence of RasGRP1 in the trans-Golgi network (TGN) following TCR activation, the site where p21(ras) becomes activated. Our findings indicate that SKAP-55 has a dual role in regulating p21(ras)-ERK pathway via RasGRP1, as a possible mechanism to restrict activation during T-cell adhesion.
    PLoS ONE 02/2008; 3(3):e1718. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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    PLoS ONE 01/2008; · 3.53 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The costimulatory molecule CTLA-4 is a potent downregulator of T cell responses. Although localized mostly in intracellular compartments, little is understood regarding the mechanism that regulates its transport to the cell surface. In this study, we demonstrated that the adaptor TRIM (T cell receptor-interacting molecule) bound to CTLA-4 in the trans Golgi network (TGN) and promoted transport of CTLA-4 to the surface of T cells. Increased TRIM expression augmented surface CTLA-4 expression, and pulse-chase analysis showed a more rapid transport of CTLA-4 to the cell surface. A reduction of TRIM expression by small hairpin RNAs reduced the expression of surface CTLA-4. This resulted in a more localized pattern of CTLA-4 in the TGN. Altered CTLA-4 expression by TRIM was accompanied by corresponding changes in coreceptor-mediated effects on cytokine production and proliferation. Our findings identify a role for TRIM as a chaperone in regulating CTLA-4 expression and function by enhancing CTLA-4 transport to the surface of T cells.
    Immunity 12/2006; 25(5):807-21. · 19.75 Impact Factor
  • Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology 02/2006; 584:115-26. · 2.01 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Although cytotoxic T lymphocyte antigen-4 (CTLA-4) negatively regulates T cell activation, the full range of functions mediated by this coreceptor has yet to be established. In this study, we report the surprising finding that CTLA-4 engagement by soluble antibody or CD80 potently up-regulates lymphocyte function-associated antigen 1 (LFA-1) adhesion to intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1) and receptor clustering concurrent with IL-2 inhibition. This effect was also observed with CTLA-4 ligation and not with other coreceptors. T cell antigen receptor (TcR)-induced lymphocyte function-associated antigen 1 function was also dependent on CTLA-4 expression as observed with reduced adhesion/clustering on CTLA-4(-/-) primary T cells. CTLA-4 up-regulated adhesion was mediated by regulator for cell adhesion and polarization type 1 (Rap-1) as shown by anti-CTLA-4-induced Rap-1 activation as well as Rap-1-N17 blockade and Rap-1-V12 mimicry of adhesion/clustering. Our findings identify a potent role for CTLA-4 in directing integrin adhesion and provide an alternate mechanism to account for aspects of CTLA-4 function in T cell immunity.
    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 10/2005; 102(36):12861-6. · 9.81 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

152 Citations
62.77 Total Impact Points


  • 2014
    • Cambridge Institute for Medical Research
      Cambridge, England, United Kingdom
  • 2008
    • University of Cambridge
      • Department of Pathology
      Cambridge, ENG, United Kingdom
  • 2005–2006
    • Imperial College London
      • Faculty of Medicine
      London, ENG, United Kingdom