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J Exp Med. 2018 Sep 3;215(9):2413-2428. doi: 10.1084/jem.20171810. Epub 2018 Aug 9.

BCAP links IL-1R to the PI3K-mTOR pathway and regulates pathogenic Th17 cell differentiation.

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Department of Immunology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX.
Department of Molecular and Cellular Medicine and Department of Microbial Pathogenesis and Immunology, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX.
Department of Immunology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX


The toll-like receptor (TLR) and interleukin (IL)-1 family of receptors share several signaling components, including the most upstream adapter, MyD88. We previously reported the discovery of B cell adapter for phosphoinositide 3-kinase (BCAP) as a novel toll-IL-1 receptor homology domain-containing adapter that regulates inflammatory responses downstream of TLR signaling. Here we find that BCAP plays a critical role downstream of both IL-1 and IL-18 receptors to regulate T helper (Th) 17 and Th1 cell differentiation, respectively. Absence of T cell intrinsic BCAP did not alter development of naturally arising Th1 and Th17 lineages but led to defects in differentiation to pathogenic Th17 lineage cells. Consequently, mice that lack BCAP in T cells had reduced susceptibility to experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis. More importantly, we found that BCAP is critical for IL-1R-induced phosphoinositide 3-kinase-Akt-mechanistic target of rapamycin (mTOR) activation, and minimal inhibition of mTOR completely abrogated IL-1β-induced differentiation of pathogenic Th17 cells, mimicking BCAP deficiency. This study establishes BCAP as a critical link between IL-1R and the metabolic status of activated T cells that ultimately regulates the differentiation of inflammatory Th17 cells.

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