Lymphocyte-specific interferon regulatory factor (LSIRF) (now called IRF4) is a transcription factor expressed only in lymphocytes. Mice deficient in IRF4 showed normal distribution of B and T lymphocyes at 4 to 5 weeks of age but developed progressive generalized lymphadenopathy. IRF4-deficient mice exhibited a profound reduction in serum immunoglobulin concentrations and did not mount detectable antibody responses. T lymphocyte function was also impaired in vivo; these mice could not generate cytotoxic or antitumor responses. Thus, IRF4 is essential for the function and homeostasis of both mature B and mature T lymphocytes.
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