Dynamic interplay between the neutral glycosphingolipid CD77/Gb3 and the therapeutic antibody target CD20 within the lipid bilayer of model B lymphoma cells

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The centroblast-specific differentiation marker CD77 (Gb(3)), is the receptor for Shiga-like toxin (SLT). The dynamic relationship between Gb(3)/CD77 and key B-cell membrane proteins was studied in Burkitt's lymphoma cells with a focus on CD20. Engagement of Gb(3)/CD77 with SLT-B reduced the amount of CD20 and CXCR4 available, but levels of BCR, MHC Class II, CD21, CD27 and CD54 remained unchanged. Cholesterol depletion promoted a decrease in the number of sites accessed by CD20, CXCR4 and Gb(3)/CD77 antibodies. Constitutive localisation of Gb(3)/CD77 to lipid rafts was unperturbed by either SLT-B binding or cholesterol depletion, whereas the opposite was true for CD20. The effects were specific to SLT-B, highlighted by the inability of cholera toxin B-subunit to alter CD20 availability. Thus, the binding of Gb(3)/CD77 by its cognate ligand transmits information within the lipid bilayer of model lymphoma cells to impact the behaviour of selective proteins, most notably CD20, via a mechanism influenced by the level of cholesterol within the membrane.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)944-9
Number of pages6
JournalBiochemical and Biophysical Research Communications
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 20 Apr 2007


  • Burkitt's lymphoma, CD20, Gb(3), membrane rafts, Shiga-like toxin

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