The MB-1/B29 heterodimer couples the B cell antigen receptor to multiple src family protein tyrosine kinases

Jiejian Lin, Louis B. Justement

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

97 Scopus citations


The B cell Ag receptor complex is comprised of membrane (m)IgM or mIgD noncovalently associated with one or more heterodimers, each containing one subunit of MB-1 (IgMα or IgDa) and one of B29 (Igβ or Igγ). It is known that cross-linking of the B cell Ag receptor results in protein tyrosine kinase activation. Recent reports from other laboratories have demonstrated that mIg coprecipitates with multiple src family protein tyrosine kinases, including blk, lyn, and fyn. However, the mechanism by which these kinases are physically coupled to the Ag receptor has not been confirmed. It has been hypothesized that the mIg-associated proteins MB-I and B29 provide a physical link between the Ag receptor (mIg) and one or more protein tyrosine kinases. In this study, we confirm previous findings demonstrating that the B cell Ag receptor coprecipitates with the MB-1/B29 heterodimer as well as the protein tyrosine kinases blk, lyn, and fyn under mild detergent conditions (1% digitonin). Additionally, we demonstrate that in detergent conditions (1% Nonidet P-40 (NP-40)) which disrupt the association between mIg and the MB-1/B29 heterodimer, no protein tyrosine kinase activity can be detected in association with mlg. These findings indicated that NP-40 effectively dissociates the B cell Ag receptor from ancillary signal transducing proteins. MB-1 and B29 were however, found to coprecipitate with blk, lyn, and fyn isolated from B cell lysates containing 1% NP-40. No significant difference was observed in the stoichiometry of association between the kinases and the MB-1/B29 heterodimer in the presence of 1% NP-40 when compared to 1% digitonin. It was further determined that in resting B cells, only a small fraction (∼1-3%) of the MB-1/B29 heterodimers appear to be complexed with protein tyrosine kinases. Finally, based on preclearing experiments, it appears that individual heterodimers may associate with a single species of protein tyrosine kinase. These data support the hypothesis that the MB-1/B29 heterodimer couples the antigen receptor to protein tyrosine kinases, thereby providing a physical link that facilitates Ag receptor-mediated regulation of kinase activity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1548-1555
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Immunology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1 1992

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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