We have measured CD5+ B cell levels in the peripheral blood of 35 type 1 (insulin-dependent) diabetic children, aged 1.1-21.2 years (10.7 ± 4.6 years). Patients were divided into two groups according to disease duration (group I <6 months and group II > 1.5 years). Group I included 18 patients and group II 17 patients. Thirty-nine healthy subjects, comparable for age and sex, served as controls. CD5+ B cells were identified by double immunofluorescence staining with rhodamine-conjugated rabbit anti-human immunoglobulin and with a mouse anti-CD5 monoclonal antibody revealed by a fluorescein-conjugated goat anti-mouse immunoglobulin. We found that CD5+ B cell levels (expressed as percentages of peripheral blood B lymphocytes) were significantly higher in group I (median 24; range 4-48) than in controls (median 14; range 0-36, P <0.001) and in group II (median 4; range 0-20, P <0.001). A follow-up study of 12 group I patients showed a significant decline in CD5+ B cell levels. The data obtained in our diabetic patients suggest that CD5+ B cells are expanded in the early phase of type 1 diabetes mellitus and may play a role in the autoimmune process of the disease.
- CD5 B cells
- Type 1 (insulin-dependent) diabetes
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism