Human IgM+IgD+ B cells, the major B cell subset in the peripheral blood, express V kappa genes with no or little somatic mutation throughout life

Eur J Immunol. 1993 Dec;23(12):3272-7. doi: 10.1002/eji.1830231232.


Peripheral blood B cells of a 67-year-old person were separated into IgM+IgD+, IgM+IgD-, and IgM-IgD- subsets, and nucleotide sequences of expressed immunoglobulin light chain variable (V) regions encoded by V kappa 3 and V kappa 4 gene family members were determined from amplified cDNA. V region sequences from IgM+IgD+ cells (the major B cell population in the blood) showed no or little somatic mutation (0.3%), in contrast to V kappa sequences from IgM+IgD- and IgM-IgD- B cells (2.0% and 3.9%, respectively). This suggests that in the human like in the mouse, and independently of age, somatically mutated memory B cells accumulate in the compartment of IgM-IgD- cells, whereas the IgM+IgD+ subpopulation consists of cells whose antibody repertoire is mainly determined by V region gene rearrangements and N-region insertion, at the molecular level. The somatically mutated IgM+IgD- cells may represent early descendants of IgM+IgD+ cells recruited into the memory cell compartment.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • B-Lymphocyte Subsets / immunology*
  • Base Sequence
  • Gene Expression
  • Genes, Immunoglobulin*
  • Humans
  • Immunoglobulin D / analysis*
  • Immunoglobulin Joining Region / genetics
  • Immunoglobulin M / analysis*
  • Immunoglobulin Variable Region / genetics*
  • Immunoglobulin kappa-Chains / genetics*
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Mutation


  • Immunoglobulin D
  • Immunoglobulin Joining Region
  • Immunoglobulin M
  • Immunoglobulin Variable Region
  • Immunoglobulin kappa-Chains

Associated data

  • GENBANK/Z26596
  • GENBANK/Z26597
  • GENBANK/Z26598
  • GENBANK/Z26599
  • GENBANK/Z26600
  • GENBANK/Z26601
  • GENBANK/Z26602
  • GENBANK/Z26603
  • GENBANK/Z26604
  • GENBANK/Z26605
  • GENBANK/Z26606
  • GENBANK/Z26607
  • GENBANK/Z26608
  • GENBANK/Z26609
  • GENBANK/Z26610
  • GENBANK/Z26611
  • GENBANK/Z26612
  • GENBANK/Z26613
  • GENBANK/Z26614
  • GENBANK/Z26615
  • GENBANK/Z26616
  • GENBANK/Z26617
  • GENBANK/Z26618
  • GENBANK/Z26619
  • GENBANK/Z26620
  • GENBANK/Z26621
  • GENBANK/Z26622
  • GENBANK/Z26623
  • GENBANK/Z26624
  • GENBANK/Z26625