Expression of the signaling lymphocytic activation molecule (SLAM)–associated protein (SAP) is critical for the germinal center (GC) reaction and T cell–dependent antibody production. However, when SAP is expressed normally, the role of the associated SLAM family receptors (SFRs) in these processes is nebulous. Herein, we established that in the presence of SAP, SFRs suppressed the expansion of the GC reaction but facilitated the generation of antigen-specific B cells and antibodies. SFRs favored the generation of antigen-reactive B cells and antibodies by boosting expression of pro-survival effectors, such as the B cell antigen receptor (BCR) and Bcl-2, in activated GC B cells. The effects of SFRs on the GC reaction and T cell–dependent antibody production necessitated expression of multiple SFRs, both in T cells and in B cells. Hence, while in the presence of SAP, SFRs inhibit the GC reaction, they are critical for the induction of T cell–mediated humoral immunity by enhancing expression of pro-survival effectors in GC B cells.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy