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February 7, 2020: At Journal Club, our experts sat down to discuss a paper on memory B-cells.
Jelcic et al 2018 - Memory B Cells Activate Brain-Homing Autoreactive CD4+ T Cells in Multiple Sclerosis
The efficacy of B-cell depleting therapies, such as Rituxan and Ocrevus, in treating patients with MS suggests that these immune cells play an important role in causing disease. Despite this, the mechanisms behind B-cell mediated MS are currently unknown. In order to determine the exact role B-cells play in causing disease, researchers at the University of Zurich examined interactions between B-cells and T-cells (another immune cell). Interestingly, this study shows that these interactions lead to an inflammatory response in MS patients that specifically targets the protein RASGRP2, which is abundant in neurons. The authors of the study are hopeful that this new mechanism of B-cell mediated MS can lead to more molecular targets for future therapies.