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MIM.611817 12p13.2-p12.3

Wednesday 14 May 2008

KLRK1, or NKG2D, belongs to the C-type lectin family. It is an activating receptor that triggers natural killer (NK) cells and costimulates CD8-positive alpha (TCRA) (MIM.186880)/beta (TCRB) (MIM.186930) T cells, but is normally absent from almost all CD4 (186940)-positive T cells.

NKG2D is also present on most gamma (TCRG) (MIM.186740)/delta (TCRD) (MIM.186790) T cells.

Signaling by NKG2D requires its association with DAP10 (HCST) (MIM.604089).


The activating killer cell lectin-like receptor NKG2D plays a key role in the natural killer (NK) cell-mediated lysis of tumours and infected cells.

Unlike other receptors, the ligands recognised by NKG2D are ’induced-self’ ligands on stressed cells.

This system requires precise regulation because inappropriate expression of NKG2D ligands might compromise NK cell activation.


- López-Larrea C, Suárez-Alvarez B, López-Soto A, López-Vázquez A, Gonzalez S. The NKG2D receptor: sensing stressed cells.Trends Mol Med. 2008 Apr;14(4):179-189. PMID: 18353724