B cells are capable of a wide range of effector functions including antibody secretion, antigen presentation, cytokine production, and generation of immunological memory. A consistent strategy for classifying human B cells by using surface molecules is essential to harness this functional diversity for clinical translation. We developed a highly multiplexed screen to quantify the co-expression of 351 surface molecules on millions of human B cells. We identified differentially expressed molecules and aligned their variance with isotype usage, VDJ sequence, metabolic profile, biosynthesis activity, and signaling response. Based on these analyses, we propose a classification scheme to segregate B cells from four lymphoid tissues into twelve unique subsets, including a CD45RB+CD27- early memory population, a class-switched CD39+ tonsil-resident population, and a CD19hiCD11c+ memory population that potently responds to immune activation. This classification framework and underlying datasets provide a resource for further investigations of human B cell identity and function.
Keywords: B cells; cell atlas; human; mass cytometry; multi-omic; single cell.
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