Author(s): Liu KQ, Bunnell SC, Gurniak CB, Berg LJ
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Abstract Itk, a Tec family tyrosine kinase, plays an important but as yet undefined role in T cell receptor (TCR) signaling. Here we show that T cells from Itk-deficient mice have a TCR-proximal signaling defect, resulting in defective interleukin 2 secretion. Upon TCR stimulation, Itk-/- T cells release normal amounts of calcium from intracellular stores, but fail to open plasma membrane calcium channels. Since thapsigargin-induced store depletion triggers normal calcium entry in Itk-/- T cells, an impaired biochemical link between store depletion and channel opening is unlikely to be responsible for this defect. Biochemical studies indicate that TCR-induced inositol 1,4,5 tris-phosphate (IP3) generation and phospholipase C gamma1 tyrosine phosphorylation are substantially reduced in Itk-/- T cells. In contrast, TCR-zeta and ZAP-70 are phosphorylated normally, suggesting that Itk functions downstream of, or in parallel to, ZAP-70 to facilitate TCR-induced IP3 production. These findings support a model in which quantitative differences in cytosolic IP3 trigger distinct responses, and in which only high concentrations of IP3 trigger the influx of extracellular calcium.
This article was published in J Exp Med
and referenced in Journal of Clinical & Cellular Immunology