Hypomethylation and over-expression of the beta isoform of BLIMP1 is Induced by Epstein-Barr virus infection of B Cells; potential implications for the pathogenesis of EBV-associated lymphomas

Katerina Vrzalikova, Sarah Leonard, Yichao Fan, Andrew Bell, Martina Vockerodt, Patrik Flodr, Kenneth L. Wright, Martin Rowe, Qian Tao, Paul Murray

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)
214 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

B-lymphocyte-induced maturation protein 1 (BLIMP1) exists as two major isoforms, α and β, which arise from alternate promoters. Inactivation of the full length BLIMP1α isoform is thought to contribute to B cell lymphomagenesis by blocking post-germinal centre (GC) B cell differentiation. In contrast, the shorter β isoform is functionally impaired and over-expressed in several haematological malignancies, including diffuse large B cell lymphomas (DLBCL). We have studied the influence on BLIMP1β expression of the Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), a human herpesvirus that is implicated in the pathogenesis of several GC-derived lymphomas, including a subset of DLBCL and Hodgkin’s lymphoma (HL). We show that BLIMP1β expression is increased following the EBV infection of normal human tonsillar GC B cells. We also show that this change in expression is accompanied by hypomethylation of the BLIMP1β-specific promoter. Furthermore, we confirmed previous reports that the BLIMP1β promoter is hypomethylated in DLBCL cell lines and show for the first time that BLIMP1β is hypomethylated in the Hodgkin/Reed-Sternberg (HRS) cells of HL. Our results provide evidence in support of a role for BLIMP1β in the pathogenesis of EBV-associated B cell lymphomas.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)83-101
JournalPathogens
Volume1
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 8 Oct 2012

Keywords

  • BLIMP1
  • Epstein-Barr virus
  • hypomethylation
  • Hodgkin’s lymphoma

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