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J Immunol. 2010 Feb 1;184(3):1348-60. doi: 10.4049/jimmunol.0901878. Epub 2009 Dec 30.

Autoimmune disease in Lyn-deficient mice is dependent on an inflammatory environment established by IL-6.

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1
Signal Transduction Laboratory, Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research, Royal Melbourne Hospital, Victoria, Australia.

Abstract

Lyn-deficient mice develop Ab-mediated autoimmune disease resembling systemic lupus erythematosus where hyperactive B cells are major contributors to pathology. In this study, we show that an inflammatory environment is established in Lyn(-/-) mice that perturbs several immune cell compartments and drives autoimmune disease. Lyn(-/-) leukocytes, notably B cells, are able to produce IL-6, which facilitates hyperactivation of B and T cells, enhanced myelopoiesis, splenomegaly, and, ultimately, generation of pathogenic autoreactive Abs. Lyn(-/-) dendritic cells show increased maturation, but this phenotype is independent of autoimmunity as it is reiterated in B cell-deficient Lyn(-/-) mice. Genetic deletion of IL-6 on a Lyn-deficient background does not alter B cell development, plasma cell accumulation, or dendritic cell hypermaturation, suggesting that these characteristics are intrinsic to the loss of Lyn. However, hyperactivation of B and T cell compartments, extramedullary hematopoiesis, expansion of the myeloid lineage and autoimmune disease are all ameliorated in Lyn(-/-)IL-6(-/-) mice. Importantly, our studies show that although Lyn(-/-) B cells may be autoreactive, it is the IL-6-dependent inflammatory environment they engender that dictates their disease-causing potential. These findings improve our understanding of the mode of action of anti-IL-6 and B cell-directed therapies in autoimmune and inflammatory disease treatment.

PMID:
20042579
DOI:
10.4049/jimmunol.0901878
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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