Immunogenetics of marsupial B-cells

Andrea L. Schraven, Hayley J. Stannard, Oselyne T.W. Ong, Julie M. Old

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Marsupials and eutherians are mammals that differ in their physiological traits, predominately their reproductive and developmental strategies; eutherians give birth to well-developed young, while marsupials are born highly altricial after a much shorter gestation. These developmental traits also result in differences in the development of the immune system of eutherian and marsupial species. In eutherians, B-cells are the key to humoral immunity as they are found in multiple lymphoid organs and have the unique ability to mediate the production of antigen-specific antibodies in the presence of extracellular pathogens. The development of B-cells in marsupials has been reported and hypothesised to be similar to that of eutherians, except that haematopoiesis occurs in the liver, postpartum, until the bone marrow fully matures. In eutherians, specific genes are linked to specific stages in B-cell development, maturation, and differentiation processes, and have been identified including immunoglobulins (heavy and light chains), cluster of differentiation markers (CD10, 19, 34 and CD79α/β), signal transduction molecules (BTK, Lyn and Syk) and transcriptional regulators (EBF1, E2A, and Pax5). This review aims to discuss the known similarities and differences between marsupial and eutherian B-cells, in regards to their genetic presence, homology, and developmental stages, as well as to highlight the areas requiring further investigation. By enhancing our understanding of the genes that are involved with B-cells in the marsupial lineage, it will, in turn, aid our understanding of the marsupial immune system and support the development of specific immunological reagents for research and wildlife conservation purposes.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
JournalMolecular Immunology
Early online date11 Nov 2019
Publication statusPublished - 2020


Dive into the research topics of 'Immunogenetics of marsupial B-cells'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this