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Autoimmunity. 2012 Aug;45(5):388-99. doi: 10.3109/08916934.2012.665523. Epub 2012 Apr 19.

Pathogenic and regulatory roles for B cells in experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis.

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  • 1Blood Research Institute, BloodCenter of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53201-2178, USA.


A dual role of B cells in experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), the animal model of the human autoimmune disease multiple sclerosis (MS), has been established. In the first role, B cells contribute to the pathogenesis of EAE through the production of anti-myelin antibodies that contribute to demyelination. On the contrary, B cells have also been shown to have protective functions in that they play an essential role in the spontaneous recovery from EAE. In this review, we summarize studies conducted in a number of species demonstrating the conditions under which B cells are pathogenic in EAE. We also discuss the phenotype and anti-inflammatory mechanisms of regulatory B cells.

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