Anton van der Merwe
My group studies the mechanism by which leucocytes such as T and NK cells recognise infected or otherwise abnormal cells. In T cells this is mediated by cell surface molecules such as the T cell antigen receptor (TCR). The first step in TCR signal transduction following ligand engagement is tyrosine phosphorylation of the TCR/CD3 complex, which we term triggering. In 1996 Simon Davis and I proposed a new model of TCR triggering, termed the kinetic-segregation model. Much of our research focuses on testing this model and extending it to other receptor-ligand systems, such as those involved in NK cell recognition. We have proposed that a large number of leucocyte cell-surface receptors (over 70 members), which we refer to as Non-catalytic Tyrosine phosphorylated Receptors or NTRs, trigger by the KS mechanism.
- Molecular interactions involved in recognition of abnormal or infected cells by leucocytes. These includes interactions with the extracellular ligands as well as with intracellular signalling molecules.
- Mechanism of triggering by the TCR and other NTRs, focusing on the kinetic-segregation model of triggering and signal integration between multiple receptors