Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Clinical and Translational Sciences

First Advisor

Daniel H. Conrad


ADAM10, ADAM17, and SPAG6 contribute significantly to humoral immunity and secondary lymphoid tissue architecture. ADAM10 and ADAM17 are two closely related zinc-metalloproteinases. Through cleavage of their ligands CD23 and TNF, respectively, they greatly influence IgE production and secondary lymphoid tissue architecture maintenance. Th1 prone WT strains initially exhibit increased ADAM17 and TNF yet reduced ADAM10 relative to Th2 prone WT strains. In the absence of B cell ADAM10, a compensatory increase in ADAM17 and TNF cleavage is noted only in Th1 prone C57Bl/6, not Th2 prone Balb/c. B cell TNF homeostasis is important for maintaining secondary lymphoid tissue architecture. We show for the first time that excessive B cell TNF production in C57-ADAM10B-/- lymph nodes contributes to loss of B/T segregation, increased HEV number and size, fibrosis, loss of FDC networks, and impaired germinal center formation. Furthermore, B cell ADAM10, which enhances IgE production through CD23 cleavage, is shown to be a marker of Th2 susceptibility. B cell ADAM10 is elevated in Th2 prone mouse strains and allergic patients compared to Th1 prone controls and as B cell ADAM10 level increases, so does IgE production. Lastly, the B cell profile of allergic patients is determined to be B cell ADAM10highADAM17lowTNFlow.

Furthermore, the mechanism underlying reduced class-switched antibody production in C57-ADAM10B-/- mice is explored. C57-ADAM10B-/- B cells exhibit a B10, or IL-10 producing, phenotype, which is linked to reduced antibody production. Furthermore, increased Tregs noted in C57-ADAM10B-/- mice contributed to reduced class switched IgE production and disease parameters following a house dust mite airway inflammation challenge.

SPAG6, a component of the central apparatus of the “9+2” axoneme, plays a central role in flagellar stability and motility. Immune cells lack cilia, but the immunological synapse is a surrogate cilium as it utilizes the same machinery as ciliogenesis including the nucleation of microtubules at the centrosome. We demonstrate that Spag6 localizes in the centrosome and is critical for centrosome polarization at and actin clearance away from the synapse between CTL and target cells. Furthermore, improper synapse formation and function likely explains reduced CTL function and class-switched antibody production in Spag6KO mice.


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Immunity Commons