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Cell Signal. 2008 Nov;20(11):1960-7. doi: 10.1016/j.cellsig.2008.07.004. Epub 2008 Jul 6.

The X-linked lymphoproliferative syndrome gene product SAP regulates B cell function through the FcgammaRIIB receptor.

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Department of Biochemistry and the Siebens-Drake Research Institute, Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Western Ontario, London, Ontario, Canada N6A 5C1.


X-linked lympho-proliferative (XLP) is an immunodeficiency condition caused by mutation or deletion of the gene encoding the adaptor protein SAP/SH2D1A. Besides defects in T cell and NK cell function and an absence of NKT cells, XLP can also manifest as lymphomas resulting primarily from uncontrolled B cell proliferation upon acute infection by Epstein-Barr virus. While it has been demonstrated that SAP regulates the functions of T cells and NK cells through the SLAM family of immunoreceptors, its role in B cells has not been defined. Here we show that SAP forms a ternary complex with the kinase Lyn and the inhibitory IgG Fc receptor FcgammaRIIB to regulate B cell proliferation and survival. SAP binds directly and simultaneously to the Lyn SH3 domain and an Immuno-receptor Tyrosine-based Inhibitory Motif (ITIM) in FcgammaRIIB, resulting in the activation of the latter. Moreover, SAP associates with FcgammaRIIB in mouse splenic B cells and promotes its tyrosine phosphorylation. Expression of SAP in the A20 B cell line led to a marked reduction in Blnk phosphorylation, a decrease in Akt activation, and a near-complete ablation of phosphorylation of the MAP kinases Erk1/2, p38 and JNK upon colligation of FcgammaRIIB with the B cell receptor (BCR). In contrast, an XLP-causing SAP mutant was much less efficient in eliciting these effects in B cells. Furthermore, compared to A20 cells, SAP transfectants displayed a significantly reduced rate of proliferation and an increased sensitivity to activation-induced cell death. Collectively these data identify an intrinsic function for SAP in inhibitory signaling in B cells and suggests that SAP may play an important role in balancing positive versus negative immune responses.

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