Intrarenal B cells in human renal allografts indicate transplant recipients with a poor prognosis, but how these cells contribute to rejection is unclear. Here we show using single-cell RNA sequencing that intrarenal class-switched B cells have an innate cell transcriptional state resembling mouse peritoneal B1 or B-innate (Bin) cells. Antibodies generated by Bin cells do not bind donor-specific antigens nor are they enriched for reactivity to ubiquitously expressed self-antigens. Rather, Bin cells frequently express antibodies reactive with either renal-specific or inflammation-associated antigens. Furthermore, local antigens can drive Bin cell proliferation and differentiation into plasma cells expressing self-reactive antibodies. These data show a mechanism of human inflammation in which a breach in organ-restricted tolerance by infiltrating innate-like B cells drives local tissue destruction.
© 2021. The Author(s).