Lien vers Pubmed [PMID] – 11602642
J. Exp. Med. 2001 Oct;194(8):1141-50
Interleukin 7 is a crucial factor for the development of murine T and B lymphocytes. We now report that, in the absence of interleukin 7, B lymphocyte production takes place exclusively during fetal and perinatal life, ceasing after 7 wk of age. In peripheral organs, however, the pool of B lymphocytes is stable throughout adult life and consists only of cells that belong to the B1 and marginal zone (MZ) compartments. This is accompanied by a 50-fold increase in the frequency of immunoglobulin (Ig)M- and IgG-secreting cells, and the concentration of serum immunoglobulins is increased three- to fivefold. Both the MZ phenotype and the increase in serum IgM are T cell independent. These findings reveal a previously undescribed pathway of B lymphopoiesis that is active in early life and is interleukin 7 independent. This pathway generates B1 cells and a normal sized MZ B lymphocyte compartment.