Régulation de l'expression des immunoglobulines au cours du développement lymphocytaire B tardif

Abstract : The random V(D)J recombination process contributes to the generation of a vast immunoglobulin (Ig) repertoire. However, imprecise V(D)J junctions lead to the appearance of frameshift mutations in two-third of the cases. Hence, numerous B-lineage cells retain non-productively V(D)J rearranged Ig alleles in their genome. Several studies including ours have shown that these non-productive alleles are transcribed but rapidly degraded by NMD « Nonsense-Mediated mRNA Decay », thus decreasing the level of mRNA encoding truncated Ig. However, less is known about the impact of alternative splicing on non-productive Ig transcripts, and especially « exon skipping », with regard to the production of truncated Ig with internal deletions. During my thesis, we have shown that truncated Ig chains lacking variable (V) domain exhibted toxic effects in plasma cells revealing a new « Truncated-Ig Exclusion » (TIE-) checkpoint during plasma cell differentiation. The TIE-checkpoint eliminates plasma cell-expressing truncated Ig, as a consequence of exon skipping during splicing of non-productive Igκ transcripts. However, the TIE checkpoint activation limits the analysis of NAS (« Nonsense associated Altered Splicing ») of Ig transcripts in plasma cells. Using a mouse model harboring an additional frameshift-inducing V exon at the IgH chain locus, we could analyze NAS of non-productive Ig transcripts in primary B cells and plasma cells. This study revealed that hypertranscription of Ig genes accompanying plasma cell differentiation favors alternative splicing of non-productive Ig transcripts. We also investigated potential connections between the NMD mechanism, involved in mRNA surveillance, and the UPR (« Unfolded Protein Response ») pathway that regulates protein homeostasis in plasma cells. Interestingly, we identified a positive regulatory loop between RNA (NMD) and protein (UPR, autophagy, proteasome) surveillance processes. In view of the literature, the occurrence of such cooperation is unique to plasma cells, and this should help to limit the expression of truncated Ig while allowing massive Ig synthesis. Finally, we studied other aspects of Ig RNA splicing, and investigated the role of splice donor site on non-coding « germline » I transcripts during CSR (« Class Switch Recombination »). Using dedicated mouse models, we found that the deletion of Iƴ1 splice donor site drastically decreased CSR to IgG1. Overall, this study demonstrated that the recognition of I exon donor splice site enhances transcription of « switch » regions S, facilitating their opening and the subsequent recruitment of AID « Activation-Induced cytidine Deaminase » during CSR.
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Mohamad Omar Ashi. Régulation de l'expression des immunoglobulines au cours du développement lymphocytaire B tardif. Immunologie. Université de Limoges, 2018. Français. ⟨NNT : 2018LIMO0008⟩. ⟨tel-02122795⟩

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