P3 - Impact of α2,6-linked sialic acids on B cell development and antibody function in vivo
α2,6-linked sialic acid residues are potent modulators of cellular and humoral immune responses. Thus, mice lacking either a functional St6gal1 gene or the corresponding receptors recognizing α2,6-linked sialic acid residues show impaired immune responses. While it has become well established that α2,6-linked sialic acid residues are critical modulators of human and mouse IgG activity, much less is known about how α2,6-linked sialic acid residues impact B cell development and function intrinsically and how a lack of serum immunoglobulin sialylation affects humoral immune homeostasis in general. By generating mice with a B cell specific deletion of ST6Gal1 we will dissect how a B cell intrinsic loss of α2,6-linked sialylation impacts B cell development and T cell-dependent and independent immune responses. In addition, we will investigate how a B cell specific lack of α2,6 sialylation alone or in combination with other checkpoints of humoral tolerance impacts autoreactive B cell responses.