The effect of cytokine treatment on the in vivo maturation and Ig isotype switching of human B cells was studied in a modified SCID-hu mouse model. SCID mice, subcutaneously cotransplanted with small fragments of fetal human thymus and bone (SCID-hu BM/T mice) generated all human leukocyte lineages including T and B lymphocytes, macrophages, and granulocytes. All SCID-hu BM/T mice spontaneously produced human IgM and IgG, whereas IgE and IgA were detected in 37 and 80% of the mice, respectively, indicating that productive human T-B cell interactions resulting in Ig isotype switching occur in these mice. Administration of IL-4 to SCID-hu BM/T mice enhanced human B cell maturation, as judged by the increase in the percentages of CD45+, CD19+ bone marrow B cells expressing CD20, CD23, CD40, sIgM, and sIgD. Furthermore, these cells were also functionally more mature because they spontaneously produced human IgG/IgG4 in vitro and could be induced to secrete human IgE by addition of anti-CD40 mAb alone. In contrast, B cells isolated from PBS- treated mice only produce significant Ig levels after stimulation with anti- CD40 mAb in the presence of exogenous IL-4. IL-4 administration also induced human IgE synthesis in 44% of the mice, which had no serum IgE before treatment. More importantly, ongoing human IgE synthesis in SCID-hu BM/T mice was suppressed by >90% following administration of an IL-4 mutant protein, which acts as an IL-4 and IL-13 receptor antagonist. These results suggest that IL-4/IL-13 receptor antagonists have potential clinical utility in treating human atopic diseases associated with enhanced IgE production.
|Number of pages||9|
|Journal||Journal of Immunology|
|Publication status||Published - 1995|
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