H-Y antigen-binding B cells develop in male recipients of female hematopoietic cells and associate with chronic graft vs. host disease PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA Sahaf, B., Yang, Y., Arai, S., Herzenberg, L. A., Herzenberg, L. A., Miklos, D. B. 2013; 110 (8): 3005-3010


B cells are known to play an important role in pathogenesis of human chronic graft vs. host disease (cGVHD). Our group has previously shown that IgG allo-antibodies recognize Y chromosome-encoded proteins (H-Y) and a dominant H-Y epitope, DEAD box protein (DBY-2) detectable 6-12 mo after transplant in male patients who receive grafts from female donors (F?M) hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT). Here we present FACS studies of peripheral blood mononuclear cells collected 6 mo after transplant showing that 16 of 28 (57%) F?M HCT patients have circulating donor B cells that express B-cell receptor (mainly IgM and Ig?) specific for DBY-2. The detection of these DBY-2 B cells 6 mo after HCT are associated with cGVHD development (P = 0.004). Specifically, 15 of 16 F?M with DBY-2 B cells developed cGVHD. In contrast, cGVHD developed in only 5 of the 12 who did not have DBY-2 B cells detected. This demonstrates circulating human B cells binding an alloantigen (DBY-2) and that these DBY-2-specific B cells appear before development of cGVHD in roughly half of the F?M patients. Our study suggests that detection of anti-DBY-2 B cells may predict cGVHD and that this prediction may have clinical utility. Validation of this hypothesis will require larger prospective studies.

View details for DOI 10.1073/pnas.1222900110

View details for Web of Science ID 000315954400081

View details for PubMedID 23382226

View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3581974