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Early divergent B cell differentiation during antibody responses

Marshall, Jennifer (2009)
Ph.D. thesis, University of Birmingham.

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Abstract

The early B cell response to antigen is analyzed, probing the mechanisms of divergent differentiation into plasmablasts or germinal centre (GC) B cells. Heterozygous QMxB6 mice, in which 5% of B cells are specific for the hapten 4-hydroxy-3-nitrophenol (NP), were immunized with NP-Ficoll. Varying the antigen dose altered the proportion of B cells that entered the extra follicular or GC responses and the amount of class switch recombination (CSR). The expression of phenotypic markers and switched antibody protein in parallel with gene array analysis and single cell real time RT-PCR in responding B cells was used to identify GC and plasmablast precursors and when and where CSR occurred. The results suggest CSR occurs in B blasts before GC B cells or plasmablasts emerge in both thymus dependent and thymus independent type II responses. The protein IRF4, which is essential for CSR and plasmablast differentiation, is expressed in all responding cells immediately after immunization and selectively upregulated to high levels in plasmablasts. A hierarchy of gene expression was identified as B cells differentiate into plasmablasts whereby high IRF4 mRNA expression precedes CD138 protein, which in turn precedes Blimp1 expression

Type of Work:Ph.D. thesis.
Supervisor(s):MacLennan, Ian
School/Faculty:Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Medical & Dental Sciences
Department:Division of Immunity and Infection
Subjects:QR180 Immunology
Institution:University of Birmingham
ID Code:522
This unpublished thesis/dissertation is copyright of the author and/or third parties. The intellectual property rights of the author or third parties in respect of this work are as defined by The Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 or as modified by any successor legislation. Any use made of information contained in this thesis/dissertation must be in accordance with that legislation and must be properly acknowledged. Further distribution or reproduction in any format is prohibited without the permission of the copyright holder.
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