The ability of B-1 cells to become positively selected into the mature B cell pool, despite being weakly self-reactive, has puzzled the field since its initial discovery. Here, we explore changes in B cell positive selection as a function of developmental time by exploiting a link between CD5 surface levels and the natural occurrence of self-reactive B cell receptors (BCRs) in BCR wild-type mice. We show that the heterochronic RNA binding protein Lin28b potentiates a neonatal mode of B cell selection characterized by enhanced overall positive selection in general and the developmental progression of CD5+ immature B cells in particular. Lin28b achieves this by amplifying the CD19/PI3K/c-Myc positive feedback loop, and ectopic Lin28b expression restores both positive selection and mature B cell numbers in CD19-/- adult mice. Thus, the temporally restricted expression of Lin28b relaxes the rules for B cell selection during ontogeny by modulating tonic signaling. We propose that this neonatal mode of B cell selection represents a cell-intrinsic cue to accelerate the de novo establishment of the adaptive immune system and incorporate a layer of natural antibody-mediated immunity throughout life.
- Immunologi inom det medicinska området