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Blood. 1996 Sep 1;88(5):1755-64.

CD73 mediates adhesion of B cells to follicular dendritic cells.

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National Public Health Institute, Turku University, Finland.


Lymphocyte-vascular adhesion protein-2 was recently identified as CD73. The CD73 molecule, otherwise known as ecto-5'-nucleotidase, is a lymphocyte maturation marker that is involved in intracellular signaling, and lymphocyte proliferation and activation. We now show that CD73, in addition to mediating lymphocyte binding to endothelial cells, also mediates adhesion between B cells and follicular dendritic cells (FDC), as a monoclonal antibody (MoAb) against CD73 inhibited the aggregation of isolated germinal center B cells and FDC in vitro. Cytocentrifuge preparations of isolated germinal center cells and two-color immunofluorescence stainings of different tonsillar B-cell populations show that CD73 is expressed on FDC and on small, recirculating IgD+ B cells, but only on a few B cells inside the germinal center. Thus, we propose that CD73 on FDC has an important role in controlling B cell-FDC interactions and B-cell maturation in germinal centers.

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