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Kawasaki disease (KD) is the leading cause of acquired heart disease in children. The cause remains unknown; however, epidemiologic and demographic data support a single preceding infectious agent may lead to KD. A variety of pathophysiologic responses have been proposed, including direct invasion of the coronary arteries, a superantigen response, and a post-infectious autoimmune phenomenon. A role for B cell responses during KD are supported by numerous findings including B cell specific markers identified in genome wide association studies. We have recently published data showing children with KD have similar plasmablast (PB) responses to children with infections. Since during other infections, cells expressing antibodies against the preceding infection are enriched in PBs, we sought to explore the specific antibodies encoded by PBs during KD. In one child we see a massive expansion in IGHV4-34 utilizing antibodies, which has been associated with autoimmunity in the past. We further explored this expansion of IGHV4-34 utilization during the peripheral PB rise with next generation sequencing (NGS) analysis and utilizing newer techniques of chromium chip single cell separation (10x GenomicsĀ®). We also utilized peptide array screening to attempt to identify an antigen to the most prolific clones. Copyright Ā© 2022 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Arthur J Chang, Sarah Baron, Jonathon Hoffman, Mark D Hicar. Clonal expansion and markers of directed mutation of IGHV4-34 B cells in plasmablasts during Kawasaki disease. Molecular immunology. 2022 May;145:67-77

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PMID: 35303530

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