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Science's STKE  22 Jun 2004:
Vol. 2004, Issue 238, pp. tw225-TW225
DOI: 10.1126/stke.2382004TW225

On the road to committing to antibody production, most B cells must become receptive to supporting signals delivered by antigen-specific helper T cells. Jordan et al. reveal that induction of this competence--known as priming--requires a third class of cells that provide a generic priming cue. The auxiliary population was myeloid in origin and accumulated within the spleens of mice after injection with alum, a well-known adjuvant. However, B cell priming failed to take place when either this accessory population or the cytokine signals it produces were absent. Adjuvants, like the innate immune signals they mimic, directly influence the responsiveness of B cells.

M. B. Jordan, D. M. Mills, J. Kappler, P. Marrack, J. C. Cambier, Promotion of B cell immune responses via an alum-induced myeloid cell population. Science 304, 1808-1810 (2004). [Abstract] [Full Text]