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The gene for interleukin-21 receptor is the partner of BCL6 in t(3;16)(q27;p11), which is recurrently observed in diffuse large B-cell lymphoma.

Ueda C., Akasaka T., Kurata M., Maesako Y., Nishikori M., Ichinohasama R., Imada K., Uchiyama T., Ohno H.

BCL6 translocation affecting the chromosomal band 3q27 can involve a number of non-immunoglobulin (non-IG) gene loci as partners. We report here that the gene for interleukin-21 receptor (IL-21R) is the partner of BCL6 in t(3;16)(q27;p11) translocation. The two breakpoints on 16p11 of a lymphoma cell line YM and case no. 1012 with diffuse large B-cell lymphoma, both of which carried t(3;16), were localized within the 27-kb intron 1 of IL-21R. As a result of t(3;16), the promoter region of IL-21R was substituted for the regulatory sequences of BCL6 in the same transcriptional orientation. Reverse transcriptase-mediated polymerase chain reaction revealed chimeric mRNA consisting of two non-coding exons 1a/1b of IL-21R and coding exons of BCL6 in both lymphoma cells. Fluorescence in situ chromosomal hybridization of YM metaphase cells revealed fusion signals that contained both the BCL6 and IL-21R sequences on the der(3)t(3;16) chromosome. IL-21R was actively transcribed in YM cells, while BCL6 that was under the control of the IL-21R promoter was only moderately expressed at the mRNA and protein level. We constructed expression plasmid of BCL6 that followed the promoter sequences of IL-21R. COS-7 cells transiently transfected with the plasmid expressed high level Bcl-6 protein and displayed nuclear staining with a characteristic punctate pattern by immunofluorescence, indicating that expression of BCL6 can be enhanced by t(3;16). This study added to the list of non-IG partners of BCL6 translocations a new class of gene, i.e. cytokine receptor gene, the expression of which is closely associated with lymphoid cells.

Oncogene 21:368-376(2002) [PubMed] [Europe PMC]