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Curr Opin Immunol. 2010 Aug;22(4):514-20. doi: 10.1016/j.coi.2010.04.009. Epub 2010 May 25.

B cell repertoire and ageing.

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Department of Immunobiology, King's College London School of Medicine, Guy's Campus, London SE1 9RT, UK.


A diverse B cell repertoire is essential for an effective immune response. Not only to provide a variety of antibodies to recognise the multiplicity of likely pathogen challenge, but also because B cells are important regulators of the immune response. In addition to their excellent capabilities as antigen presenting and activating cells, recent work shows that some subpopulations of B cells can have suppressive functions. The diversity of the B cell population as a whole decreases with age, and is associated with ill health. Whether decreased diversity is a feature of all B cells or a reflection of altered subpopulations is not clear, since different subsets of B cells have different functions and their repertoires are shaped by different selection pressures.

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