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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Expression of prolactin receptors in murine lymphoid cells in normal and autoimmune situations.

We have analyzed the expression of prolactin receptors (PRL-R) on murine lymphoid cells by using flow cytofluorometry analysis with biotinylated anti-PRL-R mAb raised against several epitopes of the extracellular domain of the PRL-R and by using polymerase chain reaction amplification. We demonstrated that PRL-R were universally expressed in normal rat and mouse hematopoietic tissues. In both primary lymphoid organs, namely, thymus and bone marrow, > 90% of cells were labeled by the anti-PRL-R mAb, but the density of PRL-R (assessed by fluorescence intensity) was lower on thymocytes than on bone marrow cells. In peripheral lymphoid organs there were smaller proportions of cells bearing PRL-R and we could clearly distinguish cell subsets of various fluorescence intensities. By using classical markers for lymphoid cell populations, we noted that all B cells and macrophages from spleen, lymph nodes, and blood strongly expressed the PRL-R. Regarding T cell populations, large proportions (> 85%) of PRL-R+ cells were detected in the four thymocyte subsets, thus contrasting with the smaller proportions (50 to 65%) of T cells labeled in the periphery. Similar percentages of PRL-R+ cells were observed in CD4+ and CD8+ peripheral lymphocyte subsets. Importantly, the stimulation of thymocytes and spleen cells with the T cell mitogen Con A promoted an enhancement of the density of PRL-R molecules on the cell membranes. Because hyperprolactinemia is associated with some autoimmune diseases, we also investigated PRL-R expression in the NZB autoimmune mouse. In contrast to the pattern observed in normal animals, the frequencies of PRL-R-bearing T cells as well as the density of PRL-R per cell increased with age in NZB mice, suggesting that some imbalances of PRL/PRL-R interaction might occur in autoimmune situations. In conclusion, our data provide a molecular basis for a better understanding on the mode of action of PRL within the immune system in physiologic and pathologic situations.[1]


  1. Expression of prolactin receptors in murine lymphoid cells in normal and autoimmune situations. Gagnerault, M.C., Touraine, P., Savino, W., Kelly, P.A., Dardenne, M. J. Immunol. (1993) [Pubmed]
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