- An 11 kDa protein associated with the outer membrane of many cells including lymphocytes. It is the small subunit of the MHC class I molecule. Association with beta 2-microglobulin is generally required for the transport of class I heavy chains from the endoplasmic reticulum to the cell surface. Beta 2-microglobulin is present in small amounts in serum, csf, and urine of normal people, and to a much greater degree in the urine and plasma of patients with tubular proteinemia, renal failure, or kidney transplants.
Definition from: MeSH via Unified Medical Language System at the National Library of Medicine
See also Understanding Medical Terminology.