We have compared the sensitivity of clonogenic interleukin 7 (IL-7)-dependent murine B cell precursors with that of clonogenic mature B cells and myeloid precursors to alpha-particles from plutonium-238 and X radiation. All three populations are relatively sensitive, but B cell precursors are ultrasensitive. This differential sensitivity is also observed with corticosteroid, etoposide, and cisplatin, all apoptosis-inducing drugs used in the treatment of leukemia and other cancers. Further, we show that x-rays and drugs induce the bulk of the B cell precursor population to undergo rapid apoptosis, despite the continued presence of IL-7. B cell precursors were found to express very low levels of BCL-2 protein compared with mature splenic B cells and their resistance to x-rays and corticosteroid could be enhanced by expression of a BCL-2 transgene. These data have important implications for normal lymphopoiesis and for the behavior of leukemic lymphoid precursor cells.
Interleukin 7-dependent B lymphocyte precursor cells are ultrasensitive to apoptosis.
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S D Griffiths, D T Goodhead, S J Marsden, E G Wright, S Krajewski, J C Reed, S J Korsmeyer, M Greaves; Interleukin 7-dependent B lymphocyte precursor cells are ultrasensitive to apoptosis.. J Exp Med 1 June 1994; 179 (6): 1789–1797. doi: https://doi.org/10.1084/jem.179.6.1789
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