Volume 100, Issue 4
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



B-cells have a spectrum of functions ranging from antibody production to antigen presentation and have additional vital roles in immune mechanisms. There is rudimentary knowledge about the role of B-cells in intracellular infections with contradictory findings. We explored the role of B-cell dysfunctions in visceral leishmaniasis (VL) pathogenesis in terms of the phenotypic and functional properties of B-cells during the course of disease. This study was performed on blood and splenic aspirates (SA) of VL cases pre- and post-treatment. Whole blood was used for flow cytometric studies for determining the profiles of B-cells at different time-points of treatment. Peripheral blood mononuclear cells were used for magnetic purification of B-cells, for transcriptional studies by real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). Serum/plasma was used for direct agglutination test for determining parasite-specific antibodies and SA were used for scoring the presence of parasite by microscopic examination. Flow cytometric studies depicted decreased B-cell percentages during the entire course of disease and attainment of exhaustive phenotype with tissue-like memory cell markers, indicative of B-cell dysfunctions in VL. In addition, B-cells had compromised abilities of antigen processing and presentation and altered levels of B-lymphocyte–induced maturation protein-1 (Blimp-1). Blimp-1 expression goes hand in hand with B-cell maturation antigen and transmembrane activator and calcium modulator (TACI) and cyclophilin ligand interactor, suggestive of its role in promoting plasma cell survival and antibody production. Elevated level of VL-specific antibody titre was directly correlated with exhausted phenotype and also with disease severity during VL. This study indicated for impaired B-cell functions during chronic infection which may lead to pathological consequences in human VL.


Article metrics loading...

The graphs shown below represent data from March 2017
Loading full text...

Full text loading...


Data & Media loading...

  • Received : 24 Apr 2018
  • Accepted : 14 Oct 2018
  • Published online : 18 Feb 2019

Most Cited This Month

This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error