c-Rel is dispensable for the differentiation and functional maturation of M cells in the follicle-associated epithelium

Anuj Sehgal, Atsushi Kobayashi, David S. Donaldson, Neil A. Mabbott

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

M cells reside within the follicle-associated epithelium (FAE) overlying the gut-associated lymphoid tissues. These unique phagocytic epithelial cells enable the mucosal immune system to sample antigens within the lumen of the intestine. The differentiation of M cells from uncommitted precursors in the FAE is dependent on the production of receptor activator of nuclear factor-κB ligand (RANKL) by subepithelial stromal cells. The ligation of a variety of cell surface receptors activates the nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) family of transcription factors which in-turn induce the transcription of multiple target genes. RANKL-stimulation can stimulate the nuclear translocation of the NF-κB subunit c-Rel. We therefore used c-Rel-deficient mice to determine whether the differentiation and functional maturation of M cells in the Peyer’s patches was dependent on c-Rel. Our data show that c-Rel-deficiency does not influence the expression of RANKL or RANK in Peyer’s patches, or the induction of M-cell differentiation in the FAE. RANKL-stimulation in the differentiating M cells induces the expression of SpiB which is essential for their subsequent maturation. However, SpiB expression in the FAE was also unaffected in the absence of c-Rel. As a consequence, the functional maturation of M cells was not impaired in the Peyer’s patches of c-Rel-deficient mice. Although our data showed that the specific expression of CCL20 and ubiquitin D in the FAE was not impeded in the absence of c-Rel, the expression of ubiquitin D was dramatically reduced in the B cell-follicles of c-Rel-deficient mice. Coincident with this, we also observed that the status of follicular dendritic cells in the B cell-follicles was dramatically reduced in Peyer’s patches from c-Rel-deficient mice. Taken together, our data show that c-Rel is dispensable for the RANKL-mediated differentiation and functional maturation of M cells.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)316-326
JournalImmunobiology
Volume222
Issue number2
Early online date18 Sept 2016
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2017

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • c-Rel
  • M cells
  • follicle-associated epithelium
  • Peyer’s patches
  • RANKL

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