B-1a cells play an important role in mediating tissue homeostasis and protecting against infections. They are the main producers of 'natural' IgM, spontaneously secreted serum antibodies predominately reactive to self antigens, like phosphatidylcholine (PtC), or antigens expressed by the intestinal microbiota. The mechanisms that regulate the B-1a immunoglobulin (Ig) repertoire and their antibody secretion remain poorly understood. Here, we use a novel reporter mouse to demonstrate that production of self- and microbiota-reactive antibodies is linked to BCR signaling in B-1a cells. Moreover, we show that Toll-like receptors (TLRs) are critical for shaping the Ig repertoire of B-1a cells as well as regulating their antibody production. Strikingly, we find that both the colonization of a microbiota as well as microbial-sensing TLRs are required for anti-microbiota B-1a responses, whereas nucleic-acid sensing TLRs are required for anti-PtC responses, demonstrating that linked activation of BCR and TLRs controls steady state B-1a responses to both self and microbiota-derived antigens.
- B cells
- Toll-like receptors
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Immunology and Microbiology(all)