Activated Peyer's patch B cells sample antigen directly from M cells in the subepithelial dome

Rathan Joy Komban, Anneli Stromberg, Adi Biram , Jakob Cervin, Cristina Lebrero-Fernandez, Neil Mabbott, U Yrlid, Ziv Shulman, Mats Bemark, Nils Lycke

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The germinal center (GC) reaction in Peyer´s patches (PP) requires continued access to antigens, but how this is achieved is not known. Here we show that activated antigen-specific CCR6+CCR1+GL7- B cells make close contact with M cells in the subepithelial dome (SED). Using in situ photoactivation analysis of antigen-specific SED B cells, we find migration of cells towards the GC. Following antigen injection into ligated intestinal loops containing PPs, 40 % of antigen-specific SEDB cells bind antigen within 2 hours, whereas unspecifc cells do not, indicating B cell-receptor involvment. Antigen-loading is not observed in M cell
deficient mice, but is unperturbed in mice depleted of classical dendritic cells (DC). Thus, we report a M cell-B cell antigen-specific transporting pathway in PP that is independent of DC. We propose that this antigen transport pathway has a critical role in gut IgA responses, and should be taken into account when developing mucosal vaccines
Original languageEnglish
Article number2423 (2019)
Pages (from-to)1-15
Number of pages15
JournalNature Communications
Publication statusPublished - 3 Jun 2019


  • Antibodies
  • Antigen processing and presentation
  • B cells
  • Mucosal immunology


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