Activation of NF-kappaB/Rel by CD40 engagement induces the mouse germ line immunoglobulin Cgamma1 promoter

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology

Publication Date


Document Type



Animals; Antigens, CD40; Base Sequence; Binding Sites; CD40 Ligand; *Gene Expression Regulation; *Genes, Immunoglobulin; *Immunoglobulin Class Switching; Immunoglobulin Constant Regions; Immunoglobulin G; Lymphocyte Activation; *Lymphocyte Cooperation; Membrane Glycoproteins; Mice; Molecular Sequence Data; NF-kappa B; *Promoter Regions (Genetics); Proto-Oncogene Proteins; Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-rel; Regulatory Sequences, Nucleic Acid; Transcription, Genetic


Life Sciences | Medicine and Health Sciences | Women's Studies


Interaction between CD40 on B cells and CD40 ligand (CD40L) on T cells has been shown to mediate T-cell contact help for B-cell proliferation, differentiation, and immunoglobulin isotype switching. It has recently been shown that cross-linking CD40 on mouse B cells induces germ line gamma1 and epsilon transcripts and that interleukin-4 synergizes with CD40 signaling to further induce these germ line transcripts. Germ line transcripts have been shown to be required for class switch recombination. Here we show that signaling via CD40 increases expression of a transiently transfected luciferase reporter plasmid driven by the germ line Cgamma1 promoter in M12.4.1 B-lymphoma cells. By linker-scanning mutation analysis of the promoter, we have identified a CD40-responsive region (CD40RR) which is able to confer inducibility by CD40L to a minimal c-fos promoter. The CD40RR contains three binding sites for NF-kappaB/Rel proteins which are each required for maximal induction of CD40RR activity by CD40L. Binding of the NF-kappaB/Rel proteins p50, p65, c-Rel, and RelB to the CD40RR is induced by CD40 signaling in M12.4.1 cells and in splenic B cells. Cotransfection of expression plasmids for p50 and p65 or p50 and RelB, but not c-Rel, into M12.4.1 cells transactivates the CD40RR and the germ line gamma1 promoter. These data demonstrate that NF-kappaB Rel proteins activated by CD40 ligation play an important role in induction of the germ line Cgamma1 promoter.

DOI of Published Version



Mol Cell Biol. 1996 Sep;16(9):4591-603.

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Molecular and cellular biology

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Link to article in PubMed

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