NDRG1 is induced by antigen-receptor signaling but dispensable for B and T cell self-tolerance.
Hodgson R., Xu X., Anzilotti C., Deobagkar-Lele M., Crockford TL., Kepple JD., Cawthorne E., Bhandari A., Cebrian-Serrano A., Wilcock MJ., Davies B., Cornall RJ., Bull KR.
Peripheral tolerance prevents the initiation of damaging immune responses by autoreactive lymphocytes. While tolerogenic mechanisms are tightly regulated by antigen-dependent and independent signals, downstream pathways are incompletely understood. N-myc downstream-regulated gene 1 (NDRG1), an anti-cancer therapeutic target, has previously been implicated as a CD4+ T cell clonal anergy factor. By RNA-sequencing, we identified Ndrg1 as the third most upregulated gene in anergic, compared to naïve follicular, B cells. Ndrg1 is upregulated by B cell receptor activation (signal one) and suppressed by co-stimulation (signal two), suggesting that NDRG1 may be important in B cell tolerance. However, though Ndrg1-/- mice have a neurological defect mimicking NDRG1-associated Charcot-Marie-Tooth (CMT4d) disease, primary and secondary immune responses were normal. We find that B cell tolerance is maintained, and NDRG1 does not play a role in downstream responses during re-stimulation of in vivo antigen-experienced CD4+ T cells, demonstrating that NDGR1 is functionally redundant for lymphocyte anergy.