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J Immunol. 2012 Oct 1;189(7):3293-7. Epub 2012 Aug 31.

Cutting edge: Krűppel-like factor 2 is required for phenotypic maintenance but not development of B1 B cells.

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Laboratory Medicine and Pathology, Center for Immunology, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN 55414, USA.


Several recent studies reported that Krüppel-like factor (KLF)2 controls trafficking, development, and function of B cells. Conditional B cell KLF2 knockout mice have increased numbers of marginal zone B cells and decreased numbers of B1 phenoytpe cells. However, it was unclear whether KLF2 is required for B1 B cell development, survival, or phenotypic maintenance. We show that B1 phenotype B cells are present in neonatal mice with B cell-specific KLF2 deficiency, suggesting that B1 differentiation can occur even in the absence of KLF2. Furthermore, by use of an inducible knockout strategy, we show that deletion of KLF2 in mature B1 cells causes loss of phenotypic markers associated with B1 cell identity, but it has a minimal effect on short-term cell survival. Taken together, our findings suggest that KLF2 is necessary for the maintenance of B1 cell identity rather than differentiation or survival of the population.

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