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Am J Transplant. 2010 Sep;10(9):1970-80. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-6143.2010.03223.x.

B cells help alloreactive T cells differentiate into memory T cells.

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Department of Medicine, Division of Nephrology, National University Hospital, Singapore.


B cells are recognized as effector cells in allograft rejection that are dependent upon T cell help to produce alloantibodies causing graft injury. It is not known if B cells can also help T cells differentiate into memory cells in the alloimmune response. We found that in B-cell-deficient hosts, differentiation of alloreactive T cells into effectors was intact whereas their development into memory T cells was impaired. To test if B cell help for T cells was required for their continued differentiation into memory T cells, activated T cells were sorted from alloimmunized mice and transferred either with or without B cells into naïve adoptive hosts. Activated T cells cotransferred with B cells gave rise to more memory T cells than those transferred without B cells and upon recall, mediated accelerated rejection of skin allografts. Cotransfer of B cells led to increased memory T cells by enhancing activated CD4 T-cell proliferation and activated CD8 T-cell survival. These results indicate that B cells help alloreactive T-cell differentiation, proliferation and survival to generate optimal numbers of functional memory T cells.

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