Roles for TNF-receptor associated factor 3 (TRAF3) in lymphocyte functions

Cytokine Growth Factor Rev. 2014 Apr;25(2):147-56. doi: 10.1016/j.cytogfr.2013.12.002. Epub 2013 Dec 25.


TRAF3 is an adapter protein that serves and regulates the functions of several types of receptors, located both inside the cell and at the plasma membrane. These include members of the TNF receptor superfamily (TNFR-SF), toll-like receptors (TLR), and cytokine receptors. It has become increasingly evident that the roles and functions of TRAF3 are highly context-dependent. TRAF3 can serve distinct roles for different receptors in the same cell, and also has highly cell-type-dependent functions. This review focuses upon the current state of knowledge regarding how TRAF3 regulates the biology and effector functions of B and T lymphocytes, two major cell types of the adaptive immune response in which TRAF3 has markedly distinct roles.

Keywords: B lymphocyte; Lymphocyte activation; Signal transduction; T lymphocyte; TRAF.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • B-Lymphocytes / immunology*
  • Humans
  • Mice
  • NF-kappa B / immunology
  • Receptors, Antigen, T-Cell / immunology
  • Receptors, Cytokine / immunology
  • Receptors, Tumor Necrosis Factor / immunology*
  • Signal Transduction / immunology
  • T-Lymphocytes / immunology*
  • TNF Receptor-Associated Factor 3 / genetics
  • TNF Receptor-Associated Factor 3 / immunology*
  • Toll-Like Receptors / immunology


  • NF-kappa B
  • Receptors, Antigen, T-Cell
  • Receptors, Cytokine
  • Receptors, Tumor Necrosis Factor
  • TNF Receptor-Associated Factor 3
  • TRAF3 protein, human
  • Toll-Like Receptors