Reading the room: iNKT cells influence B cell responses

Elizabeth A. Leadbetter, Mikael C.I. Karlsson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Rapid immune responses regulated by invariant Natural Killer T (iNKT) cells bridge the gap between innate and adaptive responses to pathogens, while also providing key regulation to maintain immune homeostasis. iNKT immune protection and immune regulation are both mediated through interactions with innate and adaptive B cell populations that express CD1d. Recent studies have expanded our understanding of the position of iNKT cells at the fulcrum between regulating inflammatory and autoreactive B cells. Environmental signals influence iNKT cells to set the tone for subsequent adaptive responses, ranging from maintaining homeostasis as an iNKT regulatory cell (iNKTreg) or supporting pathogen-specific effector B cells as an iNKT follicular helper (iNKTFH). Here we review recent advances in iNKT and B cell cooperation during autoimmunity and sterile inflammation. Understanding the nature of the interactions between iNKT and B cells will enable the development of clinical interventions to strategically target regulatory iNKT and B cell populations or inflammatory ones, across a range of indications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)49-54
Number of pages6
JournalMolecular Immunology
StatePublished - Feb 2021


  • B cells
  • Humoral immunity
  • Marginal zone B cells
  • iNKT
  • iNKT
  • invariant Natural Killer T cells (iNKT)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Molecular Biology


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