New Insights into the DT40 B-Cell Receptor Cluster using a Proteomic Proximity Labeling Assay [Genomics and Proteomics]

April 4th, 2014 by Li, X.-W., Rees, J. S., Xue, P., Zhang, H., Hamaia, S. W., Sanderson, B., Funk, P. E., Farndale, R. W., Lilley, K. S., Perrett, S., Jackson, A. P.

In the vertebrate immune system, each B-lymphocyte expresses a surface IgM-class B cell receptor (BCR). When cross-linked by antigen or anti-IgM antibody, the BCR accumulates with other proteins into distinct surface clusters that activate cell signaling, division or apoptosis. However, the molecular composition of these clusters is not well defined. Here we describe a quantitative assay we call Selective Proteomic Proximity Labeling using Tyramide (SPPLAT). It allows proteins in the immediate vicinity of a target to be selectively biotinylated, and hence isolated for mass spectrometry analysis. Using the chicken B cell-line DT40 as a model, we use SPPLAT to provide the first proteomic analysis of any BCR cluster using proximity labeling. We detect known components of the BCR cluster, including integrins, together with proteins not previously thought to be BCR-associated. In particular, we identify the chicken B-lymphocyte allotypic marker chB6. We show that chB6 moves to within about 30-40 nm of the BCR following BCR cross-linking, and we show that cross-linking chB6 activates cell-binding to integrin substrates laminin and gelatin. Our work provides new insights into the nature and composition of the BCR cluster, and confirms SPPLAT as a useful research tool in molecular and cellular proteomics.