Examples of in vivo isotype class switching in IgM+ chronic lymphocytic leukemia B cells.
ABSTRACT: Chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) usually involves the expansion of a clone of CD5+ B cells synthesizing IgM antibodies. These B cells appear to be blocked at the antigen receptor-expressing stage of B cell differentiation and are thought not to undergo an isotype class switch to IgG or IgA production. In vivo and in vitro studies suggest, however, that in some instances terminal differentiation and isotype switching can occur. To test the hypothesis that in vivo isotype class switching occurs in IgM+ B-type CLL cells, we analyzed the PBMC of 19 CLL patients for the presence of transcripts encoding the rearranged CLL V(H)DJ(H) associated with either gamma or alpha H chains. The molecular data indicate that approximately 50% of B-CLL patients have amplifications of IgM+ B cells that undergo an isotype class switch. Switching to IgA appears to occur more often than to IgG; also, switching can involve different IgG subclasses in individual patients. In many instances, these CLL-related gamma and alpha transcripts are much more plentiful than those of normal B cells that produce the same isotype. These switched transcripts do not reveal evidence for the accumulation of significant numbers of new V(H) gene mutations. The cellular data indicate that B cells with lesser amounts of surface membrane IgD and higher IgM/IgD ratios are more likely to undergo this switching process. Furthermore, B cells expressing IgG and IgA of the same idiotype or V(H) family and the same CDR3 length as those of the CLL IgM+ clone can be identified in the blood of patients studied using multiparameter immunofluorescence analyses. Collectively, these data suggest that not all members of a B-CLL clone are frozen at the surface membrane Ig-expressing stage of B cell maturation, and that some members can switch to the production of non-IgM isotypes. The occurrence of switching without the accumulation of V gene mutations indicates that the processes of differentiation and diversification are not linked.
Project description:The immunoglobulin (Ig) variable region (V) genes expressed by IgM chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) B cells display little or no somatic mutations. However, preliminary findings have shown that Ig V genes of IgA and IgG CLLs may be somatically mutated, suggesting that isotype-switched CLLs may represent a "subtype" of the disease. To investigate the degree and nature of somatic mutations and the role of antigen (Ag) in the clonal selection and expansion of isotype-switched CLLs, and to determine whether specific oncogene or tumor suppressor gene mutations are associated with isotype-switched CLLs, we analyzed the expressed Ig VH gene, bcl-1 and bcl-2 proto-oncogene, and p53 tumor suppressor gene configurations of 3 IgA-, 1 IgG-, and 1 IgA/ IgG-expressing CLLs. These isotype-switched CLL B cells expressed surface HLA-DR, CD19, CD23, and CD5, and displayed no alterations of the bcl-1 and bcl-2 oncogenes and the p53 tumor-suppressor gene. The cDNA VH-D-JH gene sequence was joined with that of the C alpha gene in the B cells of the three IgA CLLs, and with that of the C gamma gene in the IgG CLL B cells. In the IgA/IgG-coexpressing CLL B cells, identical VH-D-JH cDNA sequences were spliced to either C alpha or C gamma genes. In all five CLLs, the pattern of C mu DNA probe hybridization to the digested genomic DNAs was consistent with deletion of the C mu exon from the rearranged Ig gene locus, suggesting that these CLL B cells had undergone DNA switch recombination. In one IgA CLL, the expressed VH gene was unmutated. In all other class-switched CLLs, the Ig VH segment gene was mutated, but the point mutations were not associated with intraclonal diversification. In one IgA and in the IgA/IgG-coexpressing CLL, the nature and distribution of the mutations were consistent with Ag selection. These findings suggest that IgA- and/or IgG-expressing CLLs represent, in their VH gene structure, transformants of B cells at different stages of ontogeny. They also suggest that Ag may play a role in the clonal selection of some of these isotype-switched leukemic cells, but bcl-1 and bcl-2 oncogene rearrangements and p53 tumor suppressor gene mutation are not associated with the pathogenesis of isotype-switched CLLs.
Project description:BCR signaling is a central pathogenetic pathway in chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). Most CLL cells express BCRs of IgM and IgD isotypes, but the contribution of these isotypes to functional responses remains incompletely defined. We therefore investigated differences between IgM and IgD signaling in freshly isolated peripheral blood CLL cells and in CLL cells cultured with nurselike cells, a model that mimics the lymph node microenvironment. IgM signaling induced prolonged activation of ERK kinases and promoted CLL cell survival, CCL3 and CCL4 chemokine secretion, and downregulation of BCL6, the transcriptional repressor of CCL3 In contrast, IgD signaling induced activation of the cytoskeletal protein HS1, along with F-actin polymerization, which resulted in rapid receptor internalization and failure to support downstream responses, including CLL cell survival and chemokine secretion. IgM and IgD receptor downmodulation, HS1 and ERK activation, chemokine secretion, and BCL6 downregulation were also observed when CLL cells were cocultured with nurselike cells. The Bruton's tyrosine kinase inhibitor ibrutinib effectively inhibited both IgM and IgD isotype signaling. In conclusion, through a variety of functional readouts, we demonstrate very distinct outcomes of IgM and IgD isotype activation in CLL cells, providing novel insight into the regulation of BCR signaling in CLL.
Project description:Increased IgE is a typical feature of allergic rhinitis. Local class-switch recombination has been intimated but B cell precursors and mechanisms remain elusive. Here we describe the dynamics underlying the generation of IgE-antibody secreting cells (ASC) in human nasal polyps (NP), mucosal tissues rich in ASC without germinal centers (GC). Using V<sub>H</sub> next generation sequencing, we identified an extrafollicular (EF) mucosal IgD+ naïve-like intermediate B cell population with high connectivity to the mucosal IgE ASC. Mucosal IgD+ B cells, express germline epsilon transcripts and predominantly co-express IgM. However, a small but significant fraction co-express IgG or IgA instead which also show connectivity to ASC IgE. Phenotypically, NP IgD+ B cells display an activated profile and molecular evidence of BCR engagement. Transcriptionally, mucosal IgD+ B cells reveal an intermediate profile between naïve B cells and ASC. Single cell IgE ASC analysis demonstrates lower mutational frequencies relative to IgG, IgA, and IgD ASC consistent with IgE ASC derivation from mucosal IgD+ B cell with low mutational load. In conclusion, we describe a novel mechanism of GC-independent, extrafollicular IgE ASC formation at the nasal mucosa whereby activated IgD+ naïve B cells locally undergo direct and indirect (through IgG and IgA), IgE class switch.
Project description:Antigenic exposures at epithelial sites in infancy and early childhood are thought to influence the maturation of humoral immunity and modulate the risk of developing immunoglobulin E (IgE)-mediated allergic disease. How different kinds of environmental exposures influence B cell isotype switching to IgE, IgG, or IgA, and the somatic mutation maturation of these antibody pools, is not fully understood. We sequenced antibody repertoires in longitudinal blood samples in a birth cohort from infancy through the first 3 years of life and found that, whereas IgG and IgA show linear increases in mutational maturation with age, IgM and IgD mutations are more closely tied to pathogen exposure. IgE mutation frequencies are primarily increased in children with impaired skin barrier conditions such as eczema, suggesting that IgE affinity maturation could provide a mechanistic link between epithelial barrier failure and allergy development.
Project description:B lymphocytes expressing surface IgM with or without IgD may switch to the expression of other isotypes (IgG, IgA, or IgE) in the course of immune responses. Analyses of genomic DNA from cloned myelomas and hybridomas have shown that the isotype switch is accompanied by a rearrangement characterized by deletion of DNA between the switch (S) region of the mu gene and that associated with the new isotype, resulting in the formation of a composite S region. Measurement of this deletional rearrangement has been difficult in populations of normal B cells but would be useful for investigating the mechanism of the rearrangement and determining whether deletional rearrangement is responsible for all instances of class switching. We have developed a sensitive assay for deletional rearrangement that we designate the digestion-circularization polymerase chain reaction (PCR). In this assay, genomic DNA is digested with a restriction enzyme that recognizes sites that flank the recombined composite S region. The digested DNA is then ligated at low concentrations to favor the formation of circles. The ligation joins the 5' and 3' ends of each restriction fragment, making it possible to amplify by PCR across the ligated restriction site by using appropriate primers. From DNA that has undergone deletional rearrangement, a single-sized PCR product is produced and can be quantitated. We demonstrate here that the digestion-circularization PCR assay can detect S mu-S gamma 1 rearrangements in B cells cultured with lipopolysaccharide and interleukin 4. The assay is sensitive enough to quantitate switched cells constituting only 1-2% of the population.
Project description:HIV-1 infection is associated with an early and profound depletion of mucosal memory CD4+ T cells, a population that plays an indispensable role in the regulation of isotype switching and transepithelial transport of antibodies. In this study, we addressed whether the depletion of CD4+ T cell in HIV-1-infected individuals results in altered humoral responses specific to antigens encountered at mucosal surfaces. Comprehensive protein microarray of systemic humoral responses to intestinal microbiota demonstrated reduced IgG responses to antigens derived from Proteobacteria and Firmicutes but not Bacteroidetes. Importantly, intestinal secretions of antiretroviral therapy-treated HIV-1-infected individuals exhibited a significant elevation of IgM levels and decreased IgA/IgM and IgG/IgM ratios of antibodies specific to a variety of microbial and food antigens. The presented findings indicate reduced competence of mucosal B cells for class switch recombination from IgM to other isotypes limiting their capacity to react to changing antigenic variety in the gut lumen. Decreased availability of microbiota-specific IgA and IgG may be an important factor contributing to the translocation of microbial antigens across the intestinal mucosal barrier and their systemic dissemination that drives chronic inflammation in HIV-1-infected individuals.
Project description:B cells expressing IgE contribute to immunity against parasites and venoms and are the source of antigen specificity in allergic patients, yet the developmental pathways producing these B cells in human subjects remain a subject of debate. Much of our knowledge of IgE lineage development derives from model studies in mice rather than from human subjects.We evaluate models for isotype switching to IgE in human subjects using immunoglobulin heavy chain (IGH) mutational lineage data.We analyzed IGH repertoires in 9 allergic and 24 healthy adults using high-throughput DNA sequencing of 15,843,270 IGH rearrangements to identify clonal lineages of B cells containing members expressing IgE. Somatic mutations in IGH inherited from common ancestors within the clonal lineage are used to infer the relationships between B cells.Data from 613,641 multi-isotype B-cell clonal lineages, of which 592 include an IgE member, are consistent with indirect switching to IgE from IgG- or IgA-expressing lineage members in human subjects. We also find that these inferred isotype switching frequencies are similar in healthy and allergic subjects.We found evidence that secondary isotype switching of mutated IgG1-expressing B cells is the primary source of IgE in human subjects, with lesser contributions from precursors expressing other switched isotypes and rarely IgM or IgD, suggesting that IgE is derived from previously antigen-experienced B cells rather than naive B cells that typically express low-affinity unmutated antibodies. These data provide a basis from which to evaluate allergen-specific human antibody repertoires in healthy and diseased subjects.
Project description:Ig class switch recombination (CSR) occurs in activated mature B cells, and causes an exchange of the IgM isotype for IgG, IgE, or IgA isotypes, which increases the effectiveness of the humoral immune response. DNA ds breaks in recombining switch (S) regions, where CSR occurs, are required for recombination. Activation-induced cytidine deaminase initiates DNA ds break formation by deamination of cytosines in S regions. This reaction requires reactive oxygen species (ROS) intermediates, such as hydroxyl radicals. In this study we show that the ROS scavenger N-acetylcysteine inhibits CSR. We also demonstrate that IFN-gamma treatment, which is used to induce IgG2a switching, increases intracellular ROS levels, and activates p53 in switching B cells, and show that p53 inhibits IgG2a class switching through its antioxidant-regulating function. Finally, we show that p53 inhibits DNA breaks and mutations in S regions in B cells undergoing CSR, suggesting that p53 inhibits the activity of activation-induced cytidine deaminase.
Project description:The mechanisms that contribute to the maintenance of serological memory are still unclear. Rotavirus (RV) memory B cells (mBc) are enriched in IgM(+) and CD27- subpopulations, which are associated with autoimmune diseases pathogenesis. In patients with autoimmune diseases treated with Rituximab (RTX), some autoantibodies (auto-Abs) decrease after treatment, but other auto-Abs and pathogen-specific IgG Abs remain unchanged. Thus, maintenance of autoimmune and pathogen-specific serological memory may depend on the type of antigen and/or Ab isotype evaluated. Antigen-specific mBc and antigen-specific Abs of different isotypes have not been simultaneously assessed in patients after RTX treatment. To study the relationship between mBc subpopulations and serological memory we characterized total, RV- and tetanus toxoid (TT)-specific mBc by flow cytometry in patients with autoimmune diseases before and after treatment with RTX. We also measured total, RV- and TT-Abs, and some auto-Abs by kinetic nephelometry, ELISA, and EliA tests, respectively. Minor differences were observed between the relative frequencies of RV-mBc in healthy controls and patients with autoimmune disease. After RTX treatment, naïve Bc and total, RV- and TT-specific mBc [IgM(+), switched (IgA(+)/IgG(+)), IgM(+) only, IgD(+) only, and CD27- (IgA(+)/IgG(+)/IgM(+))] were significantly diminished. An important decrease in total plasma IgM and minor decreases in total IgG and IgA levels were also observed. IgM rheumatoid factor, IgG anti-CCP, and IgG anti-dsDNA were significantly diminished. In contrast, RV-IgA, RV-IgG and RV-IgG1, and TT-IgG titers remained stable. In conclusion, in patients with autoimmunity, serological memory against RV and TT seem to be maintained by long-lived plasma cells, unaffected by RTX, and an important proportion of total IgM and serological memory against some auto-antigens seem to be maintained by short-lived plasma cells, dependent on mBc precursors depleted by RTX.
Project description:The diversity of B cell subsets and their contribution to vaccine-induced immunity in humans are not well elucidated but hold important implications for rational vaccine design. Prior studies demonstrate that B cell subsets distinguished by immunoglobulin (Ig) isotype expression exhibit divergent activation-induced fates. Here, the antigen-specific B cell response to tetanus toxoid (TTd) booster vaccination was examined in healthy adults, using a dual-TTd tetramer staining flow cytometry protocol. Unsupervised analyses of the data revealed that prior to vaccination, IgM-expressing CD27<sup>+</sup> B cells accounted for the majority of TTd-binding B cells. 7 days following vaccination, there was an acute expansion of TTd-binding plasmablasts (PB) predominantly expressing IgG, and a minority expressing IgA or IgM. Frequencies of all PB subsets returned to baseline at days 14 and 21. TTd-binding IgG<sup>+</sup> and IgA<sup>+</sup> memory B cells (MBC) exhibited a steady and delayed maximal expansion compared to PB, peaking in frequencies at day 14. In contrast, the number of TTd-binding IgM<sup>+</sup>IgD<sup>+</sup>CD27<sup>+</sup> B cells and IgM-only CD27<sup>+</sup> B cells remain unchanged following vaccination. To examine TTd-binding capacity of IgG<sup>+</sup> MBC and IgM<sup>+</sup>IgD<sup>+</sup>CD27<sup>+</sup> B cells, surface TTd-tetramer was normalised to expression of the B cell receptor-associated CD79b subunit. CD79b-normalised TTd binding increased in IgG<sup>+</sup> MBC, but remained unchanged in IgM<sup>+</sup>IgD<sup>+</sup>CD27<sup>+</sup> B cells, and correlated with the functional affinity index of plasma TTd-specific IgG antibodies, following vaccination. Finally, frequencies of activated (PD-1<sup>+</sup>ICOS<sup>+</sup>) circulating follicular helper T cells (cT<sub>FH</sub>), particularly of the CXCR3<sup>-</sup>CCR6<sup>-</sup> cT<sub>FH</sub>2 cell phenotype, at their peak expansion, strongly predicted antigen-binding capacity of IgG<sup>+</sup> MBC. These data highlight the phenotypic and functional diversity of the B cell memory compartment, in their temporal kinetics, antigen-binding capacities and association with cT<sub>FH</sub> cells, and are important parameters for consideration in assessing vaccine-induced immune responses.