What is B-lymphocytes (B-cells)?

B-lymphocytes (B-cells) are the only cells of the body which produce antibodies. These are soluble molecules (belonging to different classes) also known as gamma globulins immunoglobulins. Antibodies are very efficient players of humoral immunity.

B-cells have characteristic big nuclei, with large endoplasmic reticulum and numerous ribosomes. These features reflect their active transcriptional state (they produce large amounts of antibodies).

Molecular basis of antigen recognition by antibodies

Similarly to antigens recognized by T-cells, epitopes recognized by B-cells are millions (but less than that of T-cells). And, they don’t have limitations. Such as-
  1. Can be linear peptides of folded peptides
  2. Can also be polysaccharides, lipids, nuclei acids and small chemical molecules
  3. Can be on cells or soluble
  4. Do not need to be presented by MHC molecules

All the antibodies (also called immunoglobulins, Ig) have a similar structure, but they display an enormous variability in the antigens that they can recognize. Unlike T-cell epitopes, B-cell epitopes (generally called determinants) can be linear or conformational (3D).

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