Germinal center formation with retrovirally transduced B cells for determining the role of specific molecules in vivo
Retrovirus-mediated gene transfer has become a powerful tool to investigate roles of specific molecules in B cells, due to its efficiency and expeditiousness. This technology is applicable to activated B cells in order to determine effects of a gene of interest during germinal center (GC) reactions in combination with adoptive transfer. To achieve this, B cells derived from SW mice expressing hen egg lysozyme (HEL)-specific B cell receptors (BCR) are stimulated with HEL antigen in vivo and then with anti-CD40 antibody ex vivo. These cells are then transduced with a retrovirus allowing bicistronic co-expression of a gene of interest and GFP, enabling differentiation of transgene positive cells. The retrovirally transduced cells are then adoptively transferred into immunized CD45.1 congenic recipient mice, to enable differentiation between donor and host cells. This chapter describes methods for (1) activation of HEL-specific mature B cells, (2) retroviral transduction of the activated B cells, (3) adoptive transfer of the cells into recipients, and (4) analysis of the resultant mice by flow cytometry.
Journal Methods in Molecular Biology