Epigenetic regulation of B cell fate and function during an immune response

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The humoral immune response requires coordination of molecular programs to mediate differentiation into unique B cell subsets that help clear the infection and form immune memory. Epigenetic modifications are crucial for ensuring that the appropriate genes are transcribed or repressed during B cell differentiation. Recent studies have illuminated the changes in DNA methylation and histone post-translational modifications that accompany the formation of germinal center and antibody-secreting cells during an immune response. In particular, the B cell subset-specific expression and function of DNA methyltransferases and histone-modifying complexes that mediate epigenome changes have begun to be unravelled. This review will discuss the recent advances in this field, as well as highlight critical questions about the relationship between epigenetic regulation and B cell fate and function that are yet to be answered.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)75-84
Number of pages10
JournalImmunological Reviews
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2019


  • antibody
  • B cells
  • DNA methylation
  • epigenetics
  • histone modifiers

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