An Essential Role for BAFF in the Normal Development of B Cells Through a BCMA-Independent Pathway

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Science  14 Sep 2001:
Vol. 293, Issue 5537, pp. 2111-2114
DOI: 10.1126/science.1061964

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The B cell activating factor BAFF (BlyS/TALL-1/zTNF4) is a tumor necrosis factor (TNF)–related ligand that promotes B cell survival and binds to three receptors (BCMA, TACI, and the recently described BAFF-R). Here we report an absolute requirement for BAFF in normal B cell development. Examination of secondary lymphoid organs from BAFF-deficient mice revealed an almost complete loss of follicular and marginal zone B lymphocytes. In contrast, mice lacking BCMA had normal-appearing B lymphocyte compartments. BAFF therefore plays a crucial role in B cell development and can function through receptors other than BCMA.

  • * Present address: National Jewish Medical and Research Center, 1400 Jackson Street, Denver, CO 80206, USA.

  • To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: martin_scott{at}

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