How bacteria break B cell tolerance

07/14/05

IMMUNOLOGY

How bacteria break B cell tolerance

There is a lot of indirect evidence that microbial infections can initiate and/or worsen autoimmune disease. Autoantibody production during infection results from activation of low-affinity autoreactive B cells. But how this could lead to autoimmune disease is not clear.

In a study appearing online on July 21 in advance of print publication of the August 1 issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation, Thierry Martin and colleagues from INSERM show in vivo that an experimental infectious disease creates the necessary and sufficient conditions to activate self-reactive B cells with significant affinity. This could drive them to mature into harmful memory B cells and lead to autoimmune diseases in susceptible individuals.

Source: Eurekalert & others

Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 21 Feb 2009
    Published on PsychCentral.com. All rights reserved.

 

 

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