The role of Ig beta in precursor B cell transition and allelic exclusion

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Science  21 Apr 1995:
Vol. 268, Issue 5209, pp. 408-411
DOI: 10.1126/science.7716544


Lymphocytes express multicomponent receptor complexes that mediate diverse antigen-dependent and antigen-independent responses. Despite the central role of antigen-independent events in B cell development, little is known about the mechanisms by which they are initiated. The association between the membrane immunoglobulin (Ig) M heavy chair (micron) and the Ig alpha-Ig beta heterodimer is now shown to be essential in inducing both the transition from progenitor to precursor B cells and subsequent allelic exclusion in transgenic mice. The cytoplasmic domain of Ig beta is sufficient to induce these early antigen-independent events by a mechanism that requires conserved tyrosine residues in this protein.