The inability to adequately respond to infection can cause a whole-body state of inflammation known as sepsis. This can eventually lead to systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS), and even death. White blood cells known as B lymphocytes (B cells) produce antibodies in response to infections such as blood-borne pathogens. B cells of the marginal zone (MZ), which separates circulating blood from spleen lymphoid tissue, contribute to this early immune response, but their role in inflammation has remained unclear.
B cells from the marginal zone (MZ) of the spleen produce high levels of the pro-inflammatory cytokine interleukin-6 (IL-6) in response to bacterial endotoxins. This response is coordinated by a signaling reaction involving TLR4 and Fc?/µR, and leads to systemic inflammation and endotoxic shock.
Credit: University of Tsukuba