Leucine-rich repeat containing 8A (LRRC8A)-dependent volume-regulated anion channel activity is dispensable for T-cell development and function.

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Leucine-rich repeat containing 8A (LRRC8A) is an ubiquitously expressed transmembrane protein with 17 leucine-rich repeats (LRRs) at its C-terminal end and is an essential component of the volume-regulated anion channel (VRAC), which controls cellular volume. A heterozygous mutation in LRRC8A that truncates the 2 terminal LRRs was reported in a patient with agammaglobulinemia and absent B cells and was demonstrated to exert a dominant negative effect on T- and B-cell development in mice. Lrrc8a-/- mice have severely defective T-cell development and function. It is not known whether the T- and B-cell defects caused by LRRC8A deficiency are caused by loss of VRAC activity.


We sought to determine whether VRAC activity is required for normal T-cell development and function.


VRAC activity was examined by using patch-clamp analysis. Flow cytometry was used to examine T-cell development. T-cell proliferation, cytokine secretion, and antibody titers were measured by using standard techniques.


We demonstrate that the spontaneous mouse mutant ébouriffé (ebo/ebo) harbors a homozygous 2-bp frameshift mutation in Lrrc8a that truncates the 15 terminal LRRs of LRRC8A. The Lrrc8aebo mutation does not affect protein expression but drastically diminishes VRAC activity in T cells. ebo/ebo mice share features with Lrrc8a-/- mice that include curly hair, infertility, reduced longevity, and kidney abnormalities. However, in contrast to Lrrc8a-/- mice, ebo/ebo mice have normal T-cell development and function and intact antibody response to T-dependent antigen.


LRRC8A-dependent VRAC activity is dispensable for T-cell development and function.

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