Bruton's tyrosine kinase, a component of B cell signaling pathways, has multiple roles in the pathogenesis of lupus

Research output: Contribution to journalShort survey

7 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is an autoimmune disease characterized by the loss of adaptive immune tolerance to nucleic acid-containing antigens. The resulting autoantibodies form immune complexes that promote inflammation and tissue damage. Defining the signals that drive pathogenic autoantibody production is an important step in the development of more targeted therapeutic approaches for lupus, which is currently treated primarily with non-specific immunosuppression. Here, we review the contribution of Bruton's tyrosine kinase (Btk), a component of B and myeloid cell signaling pathways, to disease in murine lupus models. Both gain- and loss-of-function genetic studies have revealed that Btk plays multiple roles in the production of autoantibodies. These include promoting the activation, plasma cell differentiation, and class switching of autoreactive B cells. Small molecule inhibitors of Btk are effective at reducing autoantibody levels, B cell activation, and kidney damage in several lupus models. These studies suggest that Btk may promote end-organ damage both by facilitating the production of autoantibodies and by mediating the inflammatory response of myeloid cells to these immune complexes. While Btk has not been associated with SLE in GWAS studies, SLE B cells display signaling defects in components both upstream and downstream of Btk consistent with enhanced activation of Btk signaling pathways. Taken together, these observations indicate that limiting Btk activity is critical for maintaining B cell tolerance and preventing the development of autoimmune disease. Btk inhibitors, generally well-tolerated and approved to treat B cell malignancy, may thus be a useful therapeutic approach for SLE.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1986
JournalFrontiers in Immunology
Volume8
Issue numberJAN
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 22 2018

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B-Lymphocytes
Autoantibodies
Systemic Lupus Erythematosus
Myeloid Cells
Antigen-Antibody Complex
Autoimmune Diseases
Immunoglobulin Class Switching
Agammaglobulinaemia tyrosine kinase
Immune Tolerance
Genome-Wide Association Study
Plasma Cells
Immunosuppression
Nucleic Acids
Cell Differentiation
Inflammation
Kidney
Antigens
Therapeutics
Neoplasms

Keywords

  • Autoantibody
  • B cell
  • Bruton's tyrosine kinase
  • Lupus
  • Lyn
  • Plasma cell

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology

Cite this

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abstract = "Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is an autoimmune disease characterized by the loss of adaptive immune tolerance to nucleic acid-containing antigens. The resulting autoantibodies form immune complexes that promote inflammation and tissue damage. Defining the signals that drive pathogenic autoantibody production is an important step in the development of more targeted therapeutic approaches for lupus, which is currently treated primarily with non-specific immunosuppression. Here, we review the contribution of Bruton's tyrosine kinase (Btk), a component of B and myeloid cell signaling pathways, to disease in murine lupus models. Both gain- and loss-of-function genetic studies have revealed that Btk plays multiple roles in the production of autoantibodies. These include promoting the activation, plasma cell differentiation, and class switching of autoreactive B cells. Small molecule inhibitors of Btk are effective at reducing autoantibody levels, B cell activation, and kidney damage in several lupus models. These studies suggest that Btk may promote end-organ damage both by facilitating the production of autoantibodies and by mediating the inflammatory response of myeloid cells to these immune complexes. While Btk has not been associated with SLE in GWAS studies, SLE B cells display signaling defects in components both upstream and downstream of Btk consistent with enhanced activation of Btk signaling pathways. Taken together, these observations indicate that limiting Btk activity is critical for maintaining B cell tolerance and preventing the development of autoimmune disease. Btk inhibitors, generally well-tolerated and approved to treat B cell malignancy, may thus be a useful therapeutic approach for SLE.",
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N2 - Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is an autoimmune disease characterized by the loss of adaptive immune tolerance to nucleic acid-containing antigens. The resulting autoantibodies form immune complexes that promote inflammation and tissue damage. Defining the signals that drive pathogenic autoantibody production is an important step in the development of more targeted therapeutic approaches for lupus, which is currently treated primarily with non-specific immunosuppression. Here, we review the contribution of Bruton's tyrosine kinase (Btk), a component of B and myeloid cell signaling pathways, to disease in murine lupus models. Both gain- and loss-of-function genetic studies have revealed that Btk plays multiple roles in the production of autoantibodies. These include promoting the activation, plasma cell differentiation, and class switching of autoreactive B cells. Small molecule inhibitors of Btk are effective at reducing autoantibody levels, B cell activation, and kidney damage in several lupus models. These studies suggest that Btk may promote end-organ damage both by facilitating the production of autoantibodies and by mediating the inflammatory response of myeloid cells to these immune complexes. While Btk has not been associated with SLE in GWAS studies, SLE B cells display signaling defects in components both upstream and downstream of Btk consistent with enhanced activation of Btk signaling pathways. Taken together, these observations indicate that limiting Btk activity is critical for maintaining B cell tolerance and preventing the development of autoimmune disease. Btk inhibitors, generally well-tolerated and approved to treat B cell malignancy, may thus be a useful therapeutic approach for SLE.

AB - Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is an autoimmune disease characterized by the loss of adaptive immune tolerance to nucleic acid-containing antigens. The resulting autoantibodies form immune complexes that promote inflammation and tissue damage. Defining the signals that drive pathogenic autoantibody production is an important step in the development of more targeted therapeutic approaches for lupus, which is currently treated primarily with non-specific immunosuppression. Here, we review the contribution of Bruton's tyrosine kinase (Btk), a component of B and myeloid cell signaling pathways, to disease in murine lupus models. Both gain- and loss-of-function genetic studies have revealed that Btk plays multiple roles in the production of autoantibodies. These include promoting the activation, plasma cell differentiation, and class switching of autoreactive B cells. Small molecule inhibitors of Btk are effective at reducing autoantibody levels, B cell activation, and kidney damage in several lupus models. These studies suggest that Btk may promote end-organ damage both by facilitating the production of autoantibodies and by mediating the inflammatory response of myeloid cells to these immune complexes. While Btk has not been associated with SLE in GWAS studies, SLE B cells display signaling defects in components both upstream and downstream of Btk consistent with enhanced activation of Btk signaling pathways. Taken together, these observations indicate that limiting Btk activity is critical for maintaining B cell tolerance and preventing the development of autoimmune disease. Btk inhibitors, generally well-tolerated and approved to treat B cell malignancy, may thus be a useful therapeutic approach for SLE.

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