Role for the Rac1 exchange factor Vav in the signaling pathways leading to NK cell cytotoxicity

Ricciarda Galandrini, Gabriella Palmieri, Mario Piccoli, Luigi Frati, Angela Santoni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Here we investigate the activation of and a possible role for the hematopoietic Rac1 exchange factor, Vav, in the signaling mechanisms leading to NK cell-mediated cytotoxicity. Our data show that direct contact of NK cells with a panel of sensitive tumor targets leads to a rapid and transient tyrosine phosphorylation of Vav and to its association with tyrosine- phosphorylated Syk. Vav tyrosine phosphorylation is also observed following the activation of NK cells through the low-affinity Fc receptor for IgG (FcγRIII). In addition, we demonstrate that both direct and Ab-mediated NK cell binding to target cells result in the activation of nucleotide exchange on endogenous Rac1. Furthermore, Vav antisense oligodeoxynucleotide treatment leads to an impairment of NK cytotoxicity, with FcγRIII-mediated killing being more sensitive to the abrogation of Vav expression. These results provide new insight into the signaling pathways leading to cytotoxic effector function and define a role for Vav in the activation of NK cell-mediated killing.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3148-3152
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Immunology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Mar 15 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology


Dive into the research topics of 'Role for the Rac1 exchange factor Vav in the signaling pathways leading to NK cell cytotoxicity'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this