Negative role of TAK1 in marginal zone B-cell development incidental to NF-κB noncanonical pathway activation

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The transcription factor nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) signaling pathway is crucial in B-cell physiology. One key molecule regulating this pathway is the serine/threonine kinase TAK1 (MAP3K7). TAK1 is responsible for positive feedback mechanisms in B-cell receptor signaling that serve as an NF-κB activation threshold. This study aimed to better understand the correlation between TAK1-mediated signaling and B-cell development and humoral immune responses. Here we showed that a B-cell conditional deletion of TAK1 using mb1-cre resulted in a dramatic elimination of the humoral immune response, consistent with the absence of the B-1 B-cell subset. When monitoring the self-reactive B-cell system (the immunoglobulin hen egg lysozyme/soluble hen egg lysozyme double-transgenic mouse model), we found that TAK1-deficient B cells exhibited an enhanced susceptibility to cell death that might explain the disappearance of the B1 subset. In contrast, these mice gained numerous marginal zone (MZ) B cells. We consequently examined the basal and B-cell receptor-induced activity of NF-κB2 that is reported to regulate MZ B-cell development, and demonstrated that the activity of NF-κB2 increased in TAK1-deficient B cells. Thus, our results present a novelin vivofunction, the negative role of TAK1 in MZ B-cell development that is likely associated with NF-κB2 activation.

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