Purpose: Dysregulated cytokine/cytokine receptor expression may occur in B-cell lymphoproliferative disorders. Little information is available on interleukin-18 receptor (IL-18R) and IL-18 expression in normal and malignant B cells. Our purpose was to investigate this issue in human naive, germinal center (GC) and memory B cells, and in their neoplastic counterparts. Experimental Design: We have evaluated IL-18 expression and production in tonsil naive, GC, and memory B cells and in their presumed neoplastic counterparts by reverse transcription-PCR and ELISA. Moreover, IL-18Rα and β expression was investigated in the same cells by reverse transcription-PCR, flow cytometry, and immunohistochemistry. Results: We found that: (a) IL-18 mRNA was expressed in tonsil naive, GC, and memory B cells. Bioactive IL-18 was secreted by naive and GC, but not by memory B cells; (b) IL-18Rα and β transcripts were expressed in the three B-cell subsets. IL-18Rα was detected on the surface of naive, GC, and memory B lymphocytes, and IL-18Rβ was detected on GC and memory, but not naive, B cells; (c) mantle zone, follicular, marginal zone, Burkitt lymphoma (BL), and B-cell chronic lymphocytic leukemia (B-CLL) cells expressed IL-18 mRNA. B-CLL and BL cells did not produce bioactive IL-18; and (d) lymphoma B cells displayed heterogeneous expression of either or both IL-18R chain mRNA. In contrast, B-CLL cells expressed both IL-18R chains at the mRNA and protein levels. Conclusions: Dysregulated expression of IL-18 and/or IL-18R in chronic B-cell lymphoproliferative disorders may sometimes contribute to tumor escape from the host immune system.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research