Aryl hydrocarbon receptor

Target id: 2951

Nomenclature: Aryl hydrocarbon receptor

Family: Aryl hydrocarbon receptor complex

Annotation status:  image of a grey circle Awaiting annotation/under development. Please contact us if you can help with annotation.  » Email us

   GtoImmuPdb view: OFF :     Aryl hydrocarbon receptor has curated GtoImmuPdb data

Gene and Protein Information
Species TM AA Chromosomal Location Gene Symbol Gene Name Reference
Human - 838 7p21.1 AHR aryl hydrocarbon receptor
Mouse - 839 12 A3 Ahr aryl-hydrocarbon receptor
Rat - 844 6q16 Ahr aryl hydrocarbon receptor
Database Links
Ensembl Gene
Entrez Gene
Human Protein Atlas
RefSeq Nucleotide
RefSeq Protein
Selected 3D Structures
Image of receptor 3D structure from RCSB PDB
Description:  Crystal structure of the AHR-ARNT heterodimer in complex with the DRE
PDB Id:  5V0L
Resolution:  4.0Å
Species:  Human
References:  7

Download all structure-activity data for this target as a CSV file

Key to terms and symbols View all chemical structures Click column headers to sort
Ligand Sp. Action Affinity Units Reference
tapinarof Hs Agonist 6.7 – 7.0 pKd 9
pKd 6.7 – 7.0 (Kd 2x10-7 – 1x10-7 M) [9]
Description: Direct binding of tapinarof to the AhR-ARNT heterodimer by fluorescence assay.
Other Binding Ligands
Key to terms and symbols Click column headers to sort
Ligand Sp. Action Affinity Units Reference
TCDD Hs Binding - -
Immunopharmacology Comments
The AhR is activated by small signalling molecules derived from the diet, microorganisms and environmental agents, and when expressed by immune cells, it integrates the effects of the environment and metabolism on the immune response. The AhR is a critical regulator of innate and adaptive immune responses that influences the balance of Th17 and Treg cells [5]. It is widely expressed in the skin where it is important for the development and maintenance of the skin barrier [8], and is also implicated in lung epithelial barrier immune surveillance [4,10]. AhR agonists are now being exploited for immunomodulatory potential, particulary for anti-inflammatory activity [1] in skin diseases like psoriasis and atopic dermatitis (see tapinarof for example [9]) [2,6,11]. The role of the AhR in modulating the immune response in health and disease is reviewed by Gutiérrez-Vázquez and Quintana (2018) [3].
Immuno Process Associations
Immuno Process:  B cell (activation)
GO Annotations:  Associated to 1 GO processes
GO:0030888 regulation of B cell proliferation IDA
Immuno Process:  Immune regulation
GO Annotations:  Associated to 1 GO processes
GO:0030888 regulation of B cell proliferation IDA
Immuno Process:  Cellular signalling
GO Annotations:  Associated to 1 GO processes
GO:0030888 regulation of B cell proliferation IDA
General Comments
The AhR is a cytosolic ligand-activated transcription factor. It senses a wide range of endogenous and exogenous molecules, recruiting downstream pathways that impact on a variety of biological processes.


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1. Di Meglio P, Duarte JH, Ahlfors H, Owens ND, Li Y, Villanova F, Tosi I, Hirota K, Nestle FO, Mrowietz U et al.. (2014) Activation of the aryl hydrocarbon receptor dampens the severity of inflammatory skin conditions. Immunity, 40 (6): 989-1001. [PMID:24909886]

2. Gargaro M, Pirro M, Romani R, Zelante T, Fallarino F. (2016) Aryl Hydrocarbon Receptor-Dependent Pathways in Immune Regulation. Am. J. Transplant., 16 (8): 2270-6. [PMID:26751261]

3. Gutiérrez-Vázquez C, Quintana FJ. (2018) Regulation of the Immune Response by the Aryl Hydrocarbon Receptor. Immunity, 48 (1): 19-33. [PMID:29343438]

4. Lee SM, Park HY, Suh YS, Yoon EH, Kim J, Jang WH, Lee WS, Park SG, Choi IW, Choi I et al.. (2017) Inhibition of acute lethal pulmonary inflammation by the IDO-AhR pathway. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A., 114 (29): E5881-E5890. [PMID:28673995]

5. Mascanfroni ID, Takenaka MC, Yeste A, Patel B, Wu Y, Kenison JE, Siddiqui S, Basso AS, Otterbein LE, Pardoll DM et al.. (2015) Metabolic control of type 1 regulatory T cell differentiation by AHR and HIF1-α. Nat. Med., 21 (6): 638-46. [PMID:26005855]

6. Mulero-Navarro S, Fernandez-Salguero PM. (2016) New Trends in Aryl Hydrocarbon Receptor Biology. Front Cell Dev Biol, 4: 45. [PMID:27243009]

7. Seok SH, Lee W, Jiang L, Molugu K, Zheng A, Li Y, Park S, Bradfield CA, Xing Y. (2017) Structural hierarchy controlling dimerization and target DNA recognition in the AHR transcriptional complex. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A., 114 (21): 5431-5436. [PMID:28396409]

8. Smith KJ, Boyer JA, Muku GE, Murray IA, Gowda K, Desai D, Amin SG, Glick AB, Perdew GH. (2017) Editor's Highlight: Ah Receptor Activation Potentiates Neutrophil Chemoattractant (C-X-C Motif) Ligand 5 Expression in Keratinocytes and Skin. Toxicol. Sci., 160 (1): 83-94. [PMID:28973351]

9. Smith SH, Jayawickreme C, Rickard DJ, Nicodeme E, Bui T, Simmons C, Coquery CM, Neil J, Pryor WM, Mayhew D et al.. (2017) Tapinarof Is a Natural AhR Agonist that Resolves Skin Inflammation in Mice and Humans. J. Invest. Dermatol., 137 (10): 2110-2119. [PMID:28595996]

10. Thatcher TH, Williams MA, Pollock SJ, McCarthy CE, Lacy SH, Phipps RP, Sime PJ. (2016) Endogenous ligands of the aryl hydrocarbon receptor regulate lung dendritic cell function. Immunology, 147 (1): 41-54. [PMID:26555456]

11. Zhou L. (2016) AHR Function in Lymphocytes: Emerging Concepts. Trends Immunol., 37 (1): 17-31. [PMID:26700314]

How to cite this page

Aryl hydrocarbon receptor complex: Aryl hydrocarbon receptor. Last modified on 22/01/2018. Accessed on 21/07/2018. IUPHAR/BPS Guide to PHARMACOLOGY,