Human adenosine deaminases ADA1 and ADA2 bind to different subsets of immune cells

Y Kaljas, C Liu, Maksym Skaldin, Wu C, Q Zhou, Lu Y, I Aksentijevich, AV Zavialov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

88 Citations (Scopus)


At sites of inflammation and tumor growth, the local concentration of extracellular adenosine rapidly increases and plays a role in controlling the immune responses of nearby cells. Adenosine deaminases ADA1 and ADA2 (ADAs) decrease the level of adenosine by converting it to inosine, which serves as a negative feedback mechanism. Mutations in the genes encoding ADAs lead to impaired immune function, which suggests a crucial role for ADAs in immune system regulation. It is not clear why humans and other mammals possess two enzymes with adenosine deaminase activity. Here, we found that ADA2 binds to neutrophils, monocytes, NK cells and B cells that do not express CD26, a receptor for ADA1. Moreover, the analysis of CD4+ T-cell subset revealed that ADA2 specifically binds to regulatory T cells expressing CD39 and lacking the receptor for ADA1. Also, it was found that ADA1 binds to CD16- monocytes, while CD16+ monocytes preferably bind ADA2. A study of the blood samples from ADA2-deficient patients showed a dramatic reduction in the number of lymphocyte subsets and an increased concentration of TNF-α in plasma. Our results suggest the existence of a new mechanism, where the activation and survival of immune cells is regulated through the activities of ADA2 or ADA1 anchored to the cell surface.
Original languageUndefined/Unknown
Pages (from-to)555–570
JournalCellular and Molecular Life Sciences
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2017
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

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