Forsell MNE, Kvastad L, Sedimbi SK, Andersson J, Karlsson MCI
Front Immunol 8 (-) 738 [2017-06-30; online 2017-06-30]
The regulation of germinal center (GC) B cell responses to single epitopes is well investigated. How monoclonal B cells are regulated within the polyclonal B cell response to protein antigens is less so. Here, we investigate the primary GC B cell response after injection of mice with HIV-1 envelope glycoproteins. We demonstrate that single GCs are seeded by a diverse number of B cell clones shortly after a single immunization and that the presence of Env-specific antibodies can inhibit the development of early GC B cells. Importantly, the suppression was dependent on the GC B cells and the infused antibodies to target the same subunit of the injected HIV-1 envelope glycoproteins. An affinity-dependent antibody feedback has previously been shown to regulate GC B cell development. Here, we propose that this antibody-based feedback acts on GC B cells only if they target the same or overlapping epitopes. This study provides important basic information of GC B cell regulation, and for future vaccine designs with aim to elicit neutralizing antibodies against HIV-1.