Research ArticleCANCER

A novel proangiogenic B cell subset is increased in cancer and chronic inflammation

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Science Advances  13 May 2020:
Vol. 6, no. 20, eaaz3559
DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aaz3559


B cells contribute to immune responses through the production of immunoglobulins, antigen presentation, and cytokine production. Several B cell subsets with distinct functions and polarized cytokine profiles have been reported. In this study, we used transcriptomics analysis of immortalized B cell clones to identify an IgG4+ B cell subset with a unique function. These B cells are characterized by simultaneous expression of proangiogenic cytokines including VEGF, CYR61, ADM, FGF2, PDGFA, and MDK. Consequently, supernatants from these clones efficiently promote endothelial cell tube formation. We identified CD49b and CD73 as surface markers identifying proangiogenic B cells. Circulating CD49b+CD73+ B cells showed significantly increased frequency in patients with melanoma and eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE), two diseases associated with angiogenesis. In addition, tissue-infiltrating IgG4+CD49b+CD73+ B cells expressing proangiogenic cytokines were detected in patients with EoE and melanoma. Our results demonstrate a previously unidentified proangiogenic B cell subset characterized by expression of CD49b, CD73, and proangiogenic cytokines.

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