CD137L and CD4 T cells limit BCL6-expressing pre-germinal center B cell expansion and BCL6-driven B cell malignancy
journal contributionposted on 2023-08-23, 04:09 authored by Z Ding, I Quast, F Yan, Yang LiaoYang Liao, C Pitt, K O-Donnell, MJ Robinson, Wei ShiWei Shi, A Kallies, D Zotos, DM Tarlinton
Aberrant expression of the proto-oncogene BCL6 is a driver of tumorigenesis in diffuse large B cell lymphoma (DLBCL). Mice overexpressing BCL6 from the B cell-specific immunoglobulin heavy chain μ intron promoter (Iμ-Bcl6Tg/+) develop B cell lymphomas with features typical of human DLBCL. While the development of B cell lymphoma in these mice is tightly controlled by T cells, the mechanisms of this immune surveillance are poorly understood. Here we show that CD4 T cells contribute to the control of lymphoproliferative disease in lymphoma-prone Iμ-Bcl6Tg/+ mice. We reveal that this CD4 T cell immuno-surveillance requires signaling by the co-stimulatory molecule CD137 ligand (CD137L; also known as 4-1BBL), which may promote the transition of pre-malignant B cells with an activated phenotype into the germinal center stage via reverse signaling, preventing their hazardous accumulation. Thus, CD137L-mediated CD4 T cell immuno-surveillance adds another layer of protection against B cell malignancy to that provided by CD8 T cell cytotoxicity.