B-cells are a critical component of the adaptive immune system. As such, B-cells survey the body and mount appropriate protective responses to pathogen-derived antigens, resulting in the production of specific antibodies and induction of immunological memory. Given the effectiveness of these responses in selectively eliminating pathogenic infections, it is clear that the processes underlying antigen-induced B-cell activation must be highly regulated. Somewhat surprisingly given the specialized function of these immune cells, the BCR (B-cell receptor) functions similarly to receptors of the tyrosine kinase family that are commonplace in biology, as BCR ligation with antigen leads to B-cell proliferation and differentiation. In the Lymphocyte Interaction Laboratory, we are particularly interested in characterizing the very early molecular events underlying B-cell activation using a combination of cutting-edge high-resolution and in vivo imaging techniques.

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