Differential regulation of TLR4 expression in human B cells and monocytes

Lisa M. Ganley-Leal, Yan Mei Liang, Madhumita Jagannathan-Bogdan, Francis A. Farraye, B. S. Nikolajczyk Barbara S.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations


Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) is an innate immune receptor that is constitutively and inducibly activated in monocytes. Although TLR4 is expressed at very low levels on human B cells from healthy individuals, recent reports showed that TLR4 expression and function is elevated in B cells from inflammatory disease patients. New data showed that TLR4 expression on B cells is increased upon stimulation through surface Igμ and CD40 in combination with IL-4. In contrast, monocyte stimulation through CD40 and IL-4 receptors decreased TLR4 surface expression. Analysis of molecular signatures of TLR4 activation in stimulated B cells suggested that TLR4 is regulated by different mechanisms in B cells compared to monocytes. PU.1 and interferon regulatory factor association with the TLR4 promoter are sufficient for TLR4 transcription, but are not sufficient for surface TLR4 expression on B cells. In contrast, the PU.1/IRF combination is sufficient for surface TLR4 expression on monocytes. These data identify mechanisms that can activate B cell TLR4 expression in inflammatory disease patients, and demonstrate that B cells have additional layers of TLR4 regulation absent in monocytes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)82-88
Number of pages7
JournalMolecular Immunology
Issue number1-3
StatePublished - Nov 2010


  • B cells
  • Gene expression
  • Human inflammatory disease
  • Monocytes
  • Toll-like receptor 4

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Molecular Biology


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