Characterization of the effector mechanism of help for antigen-presenting and bystander resting B cell growth mediated by Ia-restricted Th2 helper T cell lines

B. J. Whalen, H. P. Tony, D. C. Parker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


The mechanism of help for resting B cell growth in MHC-restricted T-B collaboration was investigated using an in vitro polyclonal model for these T cell-B cell interactions. In the presence of rabbit anti-mouse Ig, small, size-selected B cells elicit help from syngeneic Ia-restricted Th2 cell lines specific for F(ab')2 rabbit globulin. Both Ag-presenting and bystander B cells receive signals from stimulated Th cells that lead to B cell proliferation. The results suggest that the direct activation of resting Ag-presenting and bystander B cells by Th2 cells is mediated by a similar effector mechanism. Although proliferative responses by Ag-presenting B cells are of greater magnitude, help for both Ag-presenting and bystander B cell populations is characterized by the lack of a requirement for membrane Ig cross-linking, by identical kinetics, and by the necessity for direct cell contact or close proximity with Th cells. B cell proliferation is not induced by exposure to the sequence of diffusable mediators released from a synchronized Ag-specific T-B interaction. The T cell-dependent proliferation by both B cell populations can be inhibited by excess mitomycin C-treated syngeneic 'cold target' B cells, demonstrating a requirement for a short-range T cell-B cell interaction. mAb inhibition experiments fail to identify a role for class II, LFA-1, or CD4 membrane molecules in the delivery of help to bystander B cells. Antibody against H2(d) bystander class II molecules has no effect on bystander B cell proliferation at concentrations that completely block Ag presentation by H2(d) B cells to an H2(d)-restricted Th cell line. Antibodies against the cell adhesion molecule LFA-1 or the Th cell molecule CD4 do inhibit bystander B cell proliferation, but only to the extent that they block T cell activation and the induction of help. The inductive stimulus leading to resting B cell growth results from an early, short-range interaction with Th cells. B cell proliferation is supported by T cell soluble mediators as a consequence of this interaction, which is required for at least 8 hr after T cell recognition of Ag/Ia on the surface of Ag-presenting B cells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2230-2239
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Immunology
Issue number7
StatePublished - 1988

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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