B cells rely on CD4+ T cells helper signals to optimize their responses to T-dependent antigens. Recently another subset of T cells has been identified which provides help for B cells, invariant natural killer T (iNKT) cells. iNKT cells are unique because they provide both innate and adaptive forms of help to B cells, with divergent outcomes. iNKT cells are widely distributed throughout the spleen at rest, consolidate in the marginal zone of the spleen early after activation, and are later found in germinal centers. Understanding the activation requirements for iNKT cells has led to the development of glycolipid containing nanoparticles which efficiently activate iNKT cells, enhance their cooperation with B cells, and which hold promise for vaccine development.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy