Mechanism Behind Building Long-term Memory of the Immune System

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Fundamental part involved in building long-term memory of the immune system has been identified by a new study at the University of Tokyo, Japan, published in the Journal of Experimental Medicine.

The study shows that an enzyme TBK1 plays a significant role in deciding the fate of memory B cells — a type of immune cell that develops within a germinal center and is responsible for instigating pathogenic memory after its first encounter in the body.

‘Fundamental part involved in building long-term memory of the immune system has been identified by scientists.

These findings may help provide useful information regarding the formulation of better vaccines for various diseases — COVID-19 to malaria.

“A goal of vaccination is to produce high-quality memory B cells for long-lasting antibody production. There are many factors to consider when designing vaccines for long-lasting immunity, so we should not focus only on the germinal center alone. But if you don’t have a functional germinal center, then you will be very susceptible to reinfection,” says Project Assistant Professor Michelle S. J. Lee from the UTokyo Institute of Medical Science, first author of the recent publication.

The study thereby states that the TBK1 enzyme acts as an off switch for certain genes regulating the immature states of B cells and is essential to form the germinal centers and high quality, mature antibodies.

Source: Medindia



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