B cells, but not T cells, are considered to be important for the formation of follicular dendritic cell (FDC) clusters. Stimulation with agonist mAbs against CD137 (4-1BB), a TNFR family member primarily expressed on activated T cells, was effective in promoting T cell responses, but paradoxically suppressed T-dependent humoral immunity and autoantibody production in autoimmune disease models. Our present study shows that agonistic anti-CD137 treatment activates T cells, resulting in diminished FDC networks in B cell follicles, which are important components in T-dependent humoral immune responses both before and after the initiation of an immune response. Pretreatment with anti-CD137 before the secondary immunization inhibited memory Ab responses. Interestingly, CD137 costimulation-induced diminishment of FDC is T cell dependent. In addition, both CD4+ and CD8+ T cells are recruited into FDC area and are able to regulate FDCs by CD137 costimulation through a direct or indirect mechanism. These studies have revealed a previously unappreciated role of T cells in the regulation of FDC networks.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy