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Blood. 2012 Aug 16;120(7):1489-98. doi: 10.1182/blood-2012-01-404046. Epub 2012 Jun 1.

Ly6G ligation blocks recruitment of neutrophils via a β2-integrin-dependent mechanism.

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Department of Medicine, Division of Rheumatology, Immunology, and Allergy, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA.


Ly6G is a glycosylphosphatidylinositol (GPI)-anchored protein of unknown function that is commonly targeted to induce experimental neutrophil depletion in mice. In the present study, we found that doses of anti-Ly6G Abs too low to produce sustained neutropenia remained capable of inhibiting experimental arthritis, leaving joint tissues free of infiltrating neutrophils. Thioglycollate-stimulated peritonitis was also attenuated. No alteration in neutrophil apoptosis was observed, implicating impaired recruitment. Indeed, Ly6G ligation abrogated neutrophil migration toward LTB(4) and other chemoattractants in a transwell system. Exploring the basis for this blockade, we identified colocalization of Ly6G and β2-integrins by confocal microscopy and confirmed close association by both coimmunoprecipitation and fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy. Anti-Ly6G Ab impaired surface expression of β2-integrins in LTB(4)-stimulated neutrophils and mimicked CD11a blockade in inhibiting both ICAM-1 binding and firm adhesion to activated endothelium under flow conditions. Correspondingly, migration of β2-integrin-deficient neutrophils was no longer inhibited by anti-Ly6G. These results demonstrate that experimental targeting of Ly6G has functional effects on the neutrophil population and identify a previously unappreciated role for Ly6G as a modulator of neutrophil migration to sites of inflammation via a β2-integrin-dependent mechanism.

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