Phenotypic pattern of B cells in the appendix: Reduced intensity of CD19 expression

Eli Somekh*, Francis Serour, Arkadi Gorenstein, Maya Vohl, Dan Lehman

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The lymphoid tissue of the appendix is considered as part of the gut-associated lymphoid tissue (GALT). In order to understand better the immunological significance of the appendix we analyzed the cellular composition of normal and inflamed human appendix tissue by flow cytometer with special attention to expression of the CD19 and CD5 markers on B cells. Cellular analysis was also performed on peripheral and appendical vein blood samples as well as on omentum and peritoneal fluid samples. The study population included seventeen patients aged 2-15 yr. (mean age - 11.5 yr.) undergoing appendectomy. Ten children were diagnosed with acute appendicitis while 7 had a normal appendix. Results: Compared to the peripheral blood, the appendix contained a significantly higher percentage of CD19 cells (47.6% of total lymphocytes versus 15%, p < 0.0001), and B1 cells (4.98% of total lymphocytes versus 2.42%, p = 0.001). In addition, the intensity of CD19-staining was markedly decreased in the appendix (mean - 395.7), and also in the omentum (mean - 398.2) as compared to peripheral lymphocytes (mean - 497.7, p < 0.0001 for both comparison). Comparison between the inflamed and the non-inflamed appendices revealed that the inflamed appendix contained a significantly higher proportion of B1 cells (5.64% of total lymphocytes versus 3.53%, p = 0.032), and also a higher B1/b cell ratio (0.13 vs. 0.07, p = 0.01). Conclusions: These results indicate that the appendix tissue contains higher number of B1 (and B) cells compared to the peripheral blood and that these cells play a role in the primary immune response to acute infection/inflammation in the appendix. Appendiceal B cell population is unique in term of CD19 intensity expression on their surface.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)461-469
Number of pages9
Issue number3-4
StatePublished - Jan 2000
Externally publishedYes


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