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BLC/BCA1 B-lymphocyte chemoattractant

BLC B-lymphocyte chemoattractant [1,2] is a human CXC chemokine expressed in lymphoid tissues and which selectively attracts B lymphocytes via BLR1/CXCR5 [3] (CXC chemokine receptor-5).

Gene-targeted mice (BLC-/- and CXCR5-/- mice) showed that BLC/BCA1 and its receptor CXCR5 are needed for B-cell homing to follicles in lymph nodes as well as in spleen [4].

BLC is required for the development of most lymph nodes and Peyer's patches. In addition to mediating chemoattraction, BLC induces B cells to upregulate membrane lymphotoxin α 1β 2, a cytokine that promotes follicular dendritic development and BLC expression [4].

In germinal centers, α 1β 2 expression is induced by a mechanism independent of BLC [4].

[1] Gunn, M. D. et al. (1998) Nature 391, 799-803.
[2] Legler, D. F. et al. (1998) J. Exp. Med. 187, 655-660.
[3] Förster, R. et al. (1996) Cell. 87, 1037-1047.
[4] Ansel, K. M. et al. (2000) Nature 406, 309-314.