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Science 286 (5446): 1949-1954

Copyright © 1999 by the American Association for the Advancement of Science

Requirement for B Cell Linker Protein (BLNK) in B Cell Development

Rajita Pappu, 12 Alec M. Cheng, 123 Bin Li, 124 Qian Gong, 124 Chris Chiu, 12 Nancy Griffin, 124 Mike White, 13 Barry P. Sleckman, 13 Andrew C. Chan 1234*

Linker proteins function as molecular scaffolds to localize enzymes with substrates. In B cells, B cell linker protein (BLNK) links the B cell receptor (BCR)-activated Syk kinase to the phosphoinositide and mitogen-activated kinase pathways. To examine the in vivo role of BLNK, mice deficient in BLNK were generated. B cell development in BLNK-/- mice was blocked at the transition from B220+CD43+ progenitor B to B220+CD43- precursor B cells. Only a small percentage of immunoglobulin M++ (IgM++), but not mature IgMloIgDhi, B cells were detected in the periphery. Hence, BLNK is an essential component of BCR signaling pathways and is required to promote B cell development.

1 Center for Immunology;
2 Division of Rheumatology, Department of Medicine;
3 Department of Pathology;
4 Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO 63110, USA.
*   To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: achan{at}im.wustl.edu


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