CD21 and CD19 deficiency: Two defects in the same complex leading to different disease modalities

Marjolein W J Wentink, Annechien J A Lambeck, Menno C. van Zelm, Erik Simons, Jacques J M van Dongen, Hanna Ijspeert, Elisabeth H. Schölvinck, Mirjam van der Burg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: Deficiencies in CD19 and CD81 (forming the CD19-complex with CD21 and CD225) cause a severe clinical phenotype. One CD21 deficient patient has been described. We present a second CD21 deficient patient, with a mild clinical phenotype and compared the immunobiological characteristics of CD21 and CD19 deficiency. Methods: CD21 deficiency was characterized by flowcytometric immunophenotyping and sequencing. Real-time PCR, in vitro stimulation and next generation sequencing were used to characterize B-cell responses and affinity maturation in CD21-/- and CD19-/- B cells. Results: A compound heterozygous mutation in CD21 caused CD21 deficiency. CD21-/- B cells responded normally to in vitro stimulation and AID was transcribed. Affinity maturation was less affected by CD21 than by CD19 deficiency. Conclusions: Both CD21 and CD19 deficiencies cause hypogammaglobulinemia and reduced memory B cells. CD19 deficiency causes a more severe clinical phenotype. B-cell characteristics reflect this, both after in vitro stimulation as in affinity maturation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)120-127
Number of pages8
JournalClinical Immunology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • CD19
  • CD21
  • CD81
  • Hypogammaglobulinemia
  • Primary antibody deficiency

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