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Nat Rev Immunol. 2006 Apr;6(4):283-94.

ITAM-mediated tonic signalling through pre-BCR and BCR complexes.

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Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104, USA.


Studies carried out over the past few years provide strong support for the idea that Ig alpha-Ig beta-containing complexes such as the pre-B-cell receptor and the B-cell receptor can signal independently of ligand engagement, and this has been termed tonic signalling. In this Review, I discuss recent literature that is relevant to the potential mechanisms by which tonic signals are initiated and regulated, and discuss views on how tonic and ligand-dependent (aggregation-mediated) signalling differ. These mechanisms are relevant to the possibility that tonic signals generated through immunoreceptor tyrosine-based activation motif (ITAM)-containing proteins that are expressed by oncogenic viruses induce transformation in non-haematopoietic cells.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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