Report

Structural Insight into Pre-B Cell Receptor Function

Science  13 Apr 2007:
Vol. 316, Issue 5822, pp. 291-294
DOI: 10.1126/science.1139412

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Abstract

The pre-B cell receptor (pre-BCR) serves as a checkpoint in B cell development. In the 2.7 angstrom structure of a human pre-BCR Fab-like fragment, consisting of an antibody heavy chain (HC) paired with the surrogate light chain, the “unique regions” of VpreB and λ5 replace the complementarity-determining region 3 (CDR3) loop of an antibody light chain and appear to “probe” the HC CDR3, potentially influencing the selection of the antibody repertoire. Biochemical analysis indicates that the pre-BCR is impaired in its ability to recognize antigen, which, together with electron microscopic visualization of a pre-BCR dimer, suggests ligand-independent oligomerization as the likely signaling mechanism.

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