CD30 ligand (CD30L), a member of the TNF family, is a type II membrane protein with a C-terminal extracellular domain that is homologous with the extracellular domains of other TNF family members. Also, like most TNF family members, the N-terminal cytoplasmic domain of CD30L is conserved across species, but not between family members, suggesting a possible biological function. Motivated by this observation, we investigated the potential for CD30L, when activated by cross-linking, to directly transduce a signal to the ligand-bearing cell. Cross-linking of CD30L by a mAb or by CD30-Fc fusion protein induced the production of IL-8 by freshly isolated neutrophils. Further, both cross-linking mechanisms produced a rapid oxidative burst. Indirect effects through CD30 were ruled out, since CD30L, but not CD30, is expressed on neutrophils. Expression of CD30L can be induced in peripheral blood T cells by cross-linking the CD3 component of the TCR. Peripheral blood T cells exposed to suboptimal concentrations of anti-CD3 increased metabolic activity, proliferated, and produced IL-6 in response to cross-linking of CD30L. These results indicate that cross-linked CD30L can transduce a signal to the ligand-bearing cell. This "reverse signaling" via CD30L taken together with previously published data concerning other ligands in the TNF family strongly suggest that, as a rule, TNF family members and their cognate receptors signal bidirectionally, blurring the distinction between ligand and receptor.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.