The chemokine receptor CXCR4 plays a central role in organ-specific homing and tumor spreading and is induced by hypoxia. B lymphocytes are exposed to low oxygen tensions during their development, but the influence of hypoxia on their physiology is poorly understood. Here, we show that hypoxia is associated with up-regulation of CXCR4 expression in human normal and malignant B cells, through both transcriptional and posttranslational mechanisms. However, a dichotomic functional response to CXCR4 triggering was observed: both peripheral B cells and lymphomas arising from mature B cells displayed increased responses to CXCR4 triggering under hypoxia, where as germinal center (GC) B cells as well as GC-derived lymphomas showed CXCR4 receptor desensitization. This phenomenon was associated with differential modulation of key signal-transducing molecules, including mitogen-activated protein kinase phosphatase-1 and regulator of G protein signaling molecule-1. The unresponsiveness of GC-derived lymphomatous B cells to CXCR4 triggering under hypoxia may have implications for the development and pathogenesis of GC-derived lymphoid tumors.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research