TLR9 in peritoneal B-1b cells is essential for production of protective self-reactive IgM to control Th17 cells and severe autoimmunity

Alexander D. Stoehr, Carolin T. Schoen, Maria M.M. Mertes, Susanne Eiglmeier, Vivien Holecska, Alexandra K. Lorenz, Tim Schommartz, Anna Lena Schoen, Constanze Hess, Andrë Winkler, Hedda Wardemann, Marc Ehlers*

*Corresponding author for this work
33 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The role of TLR9 in the development of the autoimmune disease systemic lupus erythematosus is controversial. In different mouse models of the disease, loss of TLR9 abolishes the generation of anti-nucleosome IgG autoantibodies but at the same time exacerbates lupus disease. However, the TLR9-dependent tolerance mechanism is unknown. In this study, we show that loss of TLR9 is associated with low peritoneal B-1b cell numbers and low levels of protective self-reactive IgM serum autoantibodies in lupus-prone FcγRIIB-deficient mice leading to the uncontrolled accumulation of proinflammatory CD4+ cells and exacerbated autoimmunity. TLR7 signaling was not able to compensate for the loss of TLR9 signaling in peritoneal B-1b cells to induce IgM Abs. Transfer of TLR9-expressing peritoneal B-1b cells from FcγRIIB-deficient mice or of recombinant monoclonal self-reactive IgM Abs was sufficient to reduce the frequency of proinflammatory Th17 cells and lupus disease in FcγRIIB/TLR9 double-deficient mice. Taken together, these data provide evidence for a TLR9-dependent tolerance mechanism of peritoneal B-1b cells generating protective self-reactive IgM in lupus-prone mice to control Th17 cell development and severe autoimmunity.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Immunology
Volume187
Issue number6
Pages (from-to)2953-2965
Number of pages13
ISSN0022-1767
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 15.09.2011

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