B lymphocyte

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noun, plural: B lymphocytes

Lymphocyte that is produced in the bone marrow and is responsible for the production of immunoglobulins and involved in the production of antibodies in the humoral immune response; a precursor of the plasma cell


B lymphocytes or simply B cells are a type of lymphocyte responsible for the production of immunoglobulins. They participate in the humoral immune response of the adaptive immune system. Other lymphocytes include the T lymphocytes and the natural killer cells. B lymphocytes differ from the other lymphocytes by having a protein on the outer surface of the cell called B cell receptor. This receptor enables the B lymphocyte to bind to a specific antigen. In birds, B lymphocytes mature in the bursa of Fabricius. In mammals, they are formed in the bone marrow. The different types of B lymphocytes include plasma B cells, memory B cells, B-1 cells, B-2 cells, marginal-zone B cells, follicular B Cells, and regulatory B cells.

Word origin: French lymphe, from Latin lympha (water, water nymph), from Ancient Greek númphē (nymph) + New Latin cyta, from Ancient Greek kútos (vessel, jar)

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