Analysis and classification of B-cell infiltrates in lupus and ANCA-associated nephritis

Kidney Int. 2008 Aug;74(4):448-57. doi: 10.1038/ki.2008.191. Epub 2008 Jun 4.


Intrarenal B cell infiltrates resembling secondary lymphoid tissue have been found in several forms of inflammatory kidney disease. Their role in renal inflammation is not well defined, perhaps because B cell clusters have been regarded as a single entity while being quite heterogeneous. Therefore we characterized intrarenal lymphoid clusters of 32 patients diagnosed with lupus nephritis and 16 with ANCA associated nephritis. We identified four increasingly organized levels of intrarenal aggregates from scattered B cells to highly compartmentalized B cell clusters with central follicular dendritic cell networks. Most B cells displayed a mature non-antibody producing phenotype with antigen presenting ability. In regions of B cell infiltration, expression of the lymphoid chemokine BCA-1 was found in cells of a dendritic-like morphology and most B cells expressed the corresponding receptor CXCR5. Biopsies containing B cells had significantly higher levels of BCA-1 mRNA expression compared to those without, suggesting a role of BCA-1 and CXCR5 for B cell infiltration into the kidney. Our study proposes a new classification of B cell clusters in lupus and ANCA associated nephritis which might help to study the function of intrarenal B cell clusters in a more differentiated manner.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Antibodies, Antineutrophil Cytoplasmic / analysis*
  • Antibodies, Antineutrophil Cytoplasmic / immunology
  • Antibodies, Antineutrophil Cytoplasmic / metabolism
  • B-Lymphocytes / immunology*
  • B-Lymphocytes / metabolism
  • B-Lymphocytes / pathology
  • Biopsy
  • Chemokine CXCL13 / analysis*
  • Chemokine CXCL13 / genetics
  • Chemokine CXCL13 / immunology
  • Germinal Center / immunology
  • Germinal Center / metabolism
  • Germinal Center / pathology
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Kidney / surgery
  • Lupus Nephritis / immunology*
  • Lupus Nephritis / metabolism
  • Lupus Nephritis / pathology
  • Nephritis / immunology*
  • Nephritis / metabolism
  • Nephritis / pathology
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • Receptors, CXCR5 / analysis*
  • Receptors, CXCR5 / genetics
  • Receptors, CXCR5 / immunology
  • Retrospective Studies


  • Antibodies, Antineutrophil Cytoplasmic
  • CXCL13 protein, human
  • CXCR5 protein, human
  • Chemokine CXCL13
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Receptors, CXCR5