05 Apr

B Cells  cells also known as B lymphocytes, are a type of white blood cell.

  • They function in the humoral immunity component of the adaptive immune system.                                                                                               
  • B cells produce antibody molecules                                      
  • Antibody molecular are inserted into the plasma membrane where they serve as a part of B-cell receptors.                                                           
  • When a naïve or memory B cell is activated by an antigen, it proliferates and differentiates into an antibody-secreting effector cell, known as a plasma cell.           
  • B cells also present antigens and secrete cytokines.    
  • In mammals, B cells mature in the bone marrow
  • In birds, B cells mature in the bursa of Fabricius, a lymphoid organ where they were first discovered by Chang and Glick

An excellent pictorial illustration enclosed underneath demonstrates B cell development and maturation (courtesy of British Society of Immunology)

B Cells - Development and maturation

Credit - Rebecca Newman / British Society of Immunology

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