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Understanding factors limiting B cell activation following vaccination

Protective vaccines rely on the ability of host B cells to recognize foreign antigen and respond, generating effector subsets that can produce antibody and neutralize invading pathogens. However, the critical first step in this process is that the naïve B cell must bind antigen and become activated. Surprisingly, we recently found that in mice 60%-80% of naïve antigen-specific B cells fail to expand in response to vaccination. Current work is aimed at understanding the intrinsic and extrinsic factors that limit the activation of naïve B cells after vaccination. To investigate these questions, we probe the phenotypes and functions of rare antigen-specific human and murine B cells using our antigen-specific enrichment techniques. The goal of this work is to understand the factors that limit naïve B cell activation allowing for activation of all potentially protective naïve B cells after vaccination.

Active Dates 
07/01/2018 to 06/30/2021