Journal of immunology (Baltimore, Md. : 1950)

Identification of a negative regulatory role for spi-C in the murine B cell lineage.

PMID 25769919


Spi-C is an E26 transformation-specific family transcription factor that is highly related to PU.1 and Spi-B. Spi-C is expressed in developing B cells, but its function in B cell development and function is not well characterized. To determine whether Spi-C functions as a negative regulator of Spi-B (encoded by Spib), mice were generated that were germline knockout for Spib and heterozygous for Spic (Spib(-/-)Spic(+/-)). Interestingly, loss of one Spic allele substantially rescued B cell frequencies and absolute numbers in Spib(-/-) mouse spleens. Spib(-/-)Spic(+/-) B cells had restored proliferation compared with Spib(-/-) B cells in response to anti-IgM or LPS stimulation. Investigation of a potential mechanism for the Spib(-/-)Spic(+/-) phenotype revealed that steady-state levels of Nfkb1, encoding p50, were elevated in Spib(-/-)Spic(+/-) B cells compared with Spib(-/-) B cells. Spi-B was shown to directly activate the Nfkb1 gene, whereas Spi-C was shown to repress this gene. These results indicate a novel role for Spi-C as a negative regulator of B cell development and function.