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Critical Reviews™ in Immunology
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ISSN Print: 1040-8401
ISSN Online: 2162-6472

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Critical Reviews™ in Immunology

DOI: 10.1615/CritRevImmunol.2014010041
pages 177-198

Latent Membrane Protein 1 and the B Lymphocyte−A Complex Relationship

Laura L. Stunz
Departments of Microbiology, The University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA 52242 and VA Medical Center, Iowa City, IA 52246
Gail A. Bishop
Department of Microbiology, Department of Internal Medicine, Graduate Program in Immunology, The University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA 52252 and VA Medical Center, Iowa City, IA 52246


The Epstein Barr Virus (EBV)-encoded latent membrane protein 1 (LMP1) exerts numerous impacts on the functions of B lymphocytes, the cell type in which EBV establishes long-term latent infections. LMP1 expression has been implicated in making important contributions to a variety of human malignancies, as well as to autoimmune diseases. EBV also infects other types of immune cells, as well as nasopharyngeal epithelium, and evidence suggests that LMP1 functions may differ among cell types. In this review, we focus upon LMP1 functions in B cells. A variety of in vitro and in vivo model systems have been used by numerous groups of investigators to probe the ways in which LMP1 alters B-cell biology and the molecular mechanisms by which it exerts these effects. Here, we present a current overview of LMP1-mediated signaling pathways and downstream functions in B cells, the in vivo outcomes of LMP1 expression in model systems and humans, and the associations between LMP1 and human disease.

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