γ-Interferon is one of several direct B cell-maturing lymphokines

Abstract

Two classes of molecules often released after the interaction of T lymphocytes, macrophages and antigen are B-cell maturation factors (BMF)1–3 and immune (γ) interferon (IFN-γ)4–7. BMFs directly induce the maturation of resting B lymphocytes to the state of active immunoglobulin secretion1–3, while IFN-γ is defined by the reduction of viral infectivity in vitro8,9. However, interferons have been shown to have a variety of effects10–17 and they have also been reported both to increase and decrease B-cell differentiation in intact animals and complex cellular mixtures in vitro18–25. Here we show that murine IFN-γ produced by recombinant DNA technology26 shows similar biological effects to BMFs from two other sources. All three preparations induce immunoglobulin secretion by both normal resting murine splenic B cells and the comparable B-cell tumour line WEHI-279.1 (refs 1, 3). IFN-γ and the other two BMFs are not identical, however, as anti-IFN-γ antibodies block the effects on B cells of IFN-γ, but not those of the other two lymphokines. IFN-γ may be one of several molecules with a direct role in driving the maturation of resting B cells to active immunoglobulin secretion.

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Sidman, C., Marshall, J., Shultz, L. et al. γ-Interferon is one of several direct B cell-maturing lymphokines. Nature 309, 801–804 (1984). https://doi.org/10.1038/309801a0

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