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Immunity. 2009 Apr 17;30(4):533-43. doi: 10.1016/j.immuni.2009.02.008. Epub 2009 Apr 9.

Lyn kinase controls basophil GATA-3 transcription factor expression and induction of Th2 cell differentiation.

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  • 1Laboratory of Immune Cell Signaling, NIAMS, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA.


T helper 1 (Th1)-Th2 cell balance is key to host defense and its dysregulation has pathophysiological consequences. Basophils are important in Th2 cell differentiation. However, the factors controlling the onset and extent of basophil-mediated Th2 cell differentiation are unknown. Here, we demonstrate that Lyn kinase dampened basophil expression of the transcription factor GATA-3 and the initiation and extent of Th2 cell differentiation. Lyn-deficient mice had a marked basophilia, a constitutive Th2 cell skewing that was exacerbated upon in vivo challenge of basophils, produced antibodies to a normally inert antigen, and failed to appropriately respond to a Th1 cell-inducing pathogen. The Th2 cell skewing was dependent on basophils, immunoglobulin E, and interleukin-4, but was independent of mast cells. Our findings demonstrate that basophil-expressed Lyn kinase exerts regulatory control on Th2 cell differentiation and function.

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