RAG-induced DNA double-strand breaks signal through Pim2 to promote pre-B cell survival and limit proliferation

Jeffrey J. Bednarski, Andrew Nickless, Deepta Bhattacharya, Rupesh H. Amin, Mark S. Schlissel, Barry P. Sleckman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations

Abstract

Interleukin 7 (IL-7) promotes pre-B cell survival and proliferation by activating the Pim1 and Akt kinases. These signals must be attenuated to induce G1 cell cycle arrest and expression of the RAG endonuclease, which are both required for IgL chain gene rearrangement. As lost IL-7 signals would limit pre-B cell survival, how cells survive during IgL chain gene rearrangement remains unclear. We show that RAG-induced DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs) generated during IgL chain gene assembly paradoxically promote pre-B cell survival. This occurs through the ATM-dependent induction of Pim2 kinase expression. Similar to Pim1, Pim2 phosphorylates BAD, which antagonizes the pro-apoptotic function of BAX. However, unlike IL-7 induction of Pim1, RAG DSB-mediated induction of Pim2 does not drive proliferation. Rather, Pim2 has antiproliferative functions that prevent the transit of pre-B cells harboring RAG DSBs from G1 into S phase, where these DNA breaks could be aberrantly repaired. Thus, signals from IL-7 and RAG DSBs activate distinct Pim kinase family members that have context-dependent activities in regulating pre-B cell proliferation and survival.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)11-17
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Experimental Medicine
Volume209
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2012
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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