Human peripheral blood B lymphocyte subpopulations: Functional and phenotypic analysis of surface IgD positive and negative subsets

D. F. Jelinek, J. B. Splawski, P. E. Lipsky

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

62 Scopus citations

Abstract

Highly purified human peripheral blood B cells stimulated with Cowan I Staphylococcus aureus (SA) and mitogen-activated T cell supernatants (T supt) generated large numbers of immunoglobulin (Ig)-secreting cells (ISC), whereas fewer ISC developed in cultures containing T supt in the absence of SA. To determine whether surface Ig isotype expression defined responsive B cell subsets, IgD+ and IgD- B cells were prepared with the fluorescence-activated cell sorter. Whereas both the IgD+ and IgD- B cells responded to SA + T supt, only the IgD- subset generated substantial numbers of ISC in response to T supt alone. Analysis of secreted Ig revealed that IgG and IgA were the predominant isotypes secreted by IgD- B cells in response to T supt or SA + T supt. By contrast, the IgD+ cells secreted predominately IgM in response to SA + T supt but not to T supt alone. When responsiveness to pokeweed mitogen (PWM) was examined in the presence of supplemental T cells, the IgD- subset was found to be greatly enriched for responsive cells, and again, IgG and IgA were the predominant isotypes secreted, although these cells were also capable of secreting some IgM. The magnitude of the response induced by PWM from IgD- B cells was usually greater than that induced by SA + T supt. Although IgD+ B cells responded poorly to PWM, the differentiation of a small number of IgM-secreting cells was routinely stimulated by this polyclonal activator in the presence of T cells. The magnitude of the PWM response by IgD+ B cells was always greatly diminished compared with that stimulated by SA + T supt. Cell cycle analysis after acridine orange staining, cell volume measurement, and staining for expression of activation antigens (transferrin receptor and 4F2) indicated that the IgD- B cells were largely resting, but did contain a population of activated cells. Removal of activated 4F2+ cells from the IgD- subset diminished but did not abolish their capacity to generate ISC in response to SA + T supt or PWM in the presence of T cells. These results suggest that the IgD- population contains both an activated 4F2+ and a resting 4F2- subset. The data emphasize that multiple subpopulations of peripheral blood B cells contain precursors of ISC. Moreover, the responsiveness of the subsets to various stimuli and the Ig isotype subsequently secreted appear to be intrinsic features of each subset.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)83-92
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Immunology
Volume136
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 1986

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology

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