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J Mult Scler (Foster City). 2015 May;2(2). pii: 1000139.

Blood B Cell and Regulatory Subset Content in Multiple Sclerosis Patients.

Author information

1
Department of Hematology and Medical Oncology, Winship Cancer Institute, Emory University School of Medicine, 1365 Clifton Rd NE, Atlanta, Georgia 30322, USA.
2
Department of Neurology, Emory MS Center, 1365 Clifton Rd NE, Atlanta, Georgia, 30322, USA.
3
Department of Neurology, Emory MS Center, 1365 Clifton Rd NE, Atlanta, Georgia, 30322, USA ; Department of Neurology (GEC), Atlanta VA Medical Center, 1670 Clairmont Road, Decatur, GA 30033.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

B cell targeted therapies have been effective in slowing multiple sclerosis (MS) disease progression suggesting a direct causal link for this lymphoid subset. A small subset of B cells with regulative properties (Bregs) exists in peripheral blood, and induction of Bregs ameliorates experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), the murine model for MS. Therefore the frequency of B cell subsets and regulatory B cells in particular in peripheral blood of MS patients is of interest.

METHODS:

The phenotype and frequency of B cell subsets in peripheral blood from 32 MS patients and 34 healthy controls (HC) were examined using flow cytometry.

RESULTS:

We found that there is an increase in CD19+ cell number in MS 1347 ± 159 cells/μL, (average ± SEM) compared to HC, 935 ± 129 cells/μL and no apparent deficiency in B-cells with a regulatory phenotype. In addition, we observed a loss of correlation between CD19+ B cells and total lymphocyte count in MS.

CONCLUSION:

These findings suggest altered blood B-cell homeostasis in MS patients.

KEYWORDS:

B cells; Flow cytometry; IL-10; Multiple sclerosis; Regulatory B cells; Rituximab

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