Recent studies performed in mice knocked out for the tumor necrosis factor (TNF), the lymphotoxin-α, or the type I TNF receptor (R), genes have shown that these animals display gross defects in germinal center (GC) formation, suggesting that members of the TNF and TNFR superfamilies are involved in the control of B-cell migration. Based on these premises, we have here investigated the effects of human recombinant (r) TNF on the polarization and locomotion of tonsillar B cells. rTNF increased the spontaneous polarization and locomotion of unfractionated tonsillar B lymphocytes in a dose-dependent manner by inducing a true chemotactic response. Memory (IgD-, CD38-) and naive (IgD+, CD38-), but not GC (IgD- , CD38+) B cells purified from total tonsillar B lymphocytes, showed a significantly higher locomotion in the presence than in the absence of rTNF. Accordingly, type I and II TNF receptors (TNFRs) were detected by flow cytometry on the surface of memory and naive, but not GC, B lymphocytes. Blocking experiments with monoclonal antibodies to type I or II TNFR showed that rTNF enhanced the spontaneous chemotaxis of memory and naive B cells through the selective engagement of type II TNFR. Finally, the TNF gene was found to be expressed in memory, naive and GC B lymphocytes; the cytokine was released in culture supernatants from the three B-cell subsets after stimulation. These data may support the hypothesis that human TNF is involved in the paracrine and perhaps autocrine control of B-cell migration in secondary lymphoid tissues.
|Number of pages||9|
|Publication status||Published - Dec 1 1997|
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