The ShcA locus encodes 3 protein iso- forms that differ in tissue specificity, subcellular localization, and function. Among these, p66Shc inhibits TCR coupling to the Ras/MAPK pathway and primes T cells to undergo apoptotic death. We have investigated the outcome of p66Shc deficiency on lymphocyte development and homeostasis. We show that p66Shc -/- mice develop an age-related lupus-like autoimmune disease characterized by spontaneous peripheral T- and B-cell activation and proliferation, autoantibody production, and immune complex deposition in kidney and skin, resulting in autoimmune glomerulonephritis and alopecia. p66Shc -/-lymphocytes display enhanced proliferation in response to antigen receptor engagement in vitro and more robust immune responses both to vaccination and to allergen sensitization in vivo. The data identify p66Shc as a negative regulator of lymphocyte activation and show that loss of this protein results in breaking of immunologic tolerance and development of systemic autoimmunity.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cell Biology