Increased Proportion of CD226+ B Cells Is Associated With the Disease Activity and Prognosis of Systemic Lupus Erythematosus

Miki Nakano, Masahiro Ayano, Kazuo Kushimoto, Shotaro Kawano, Kazuhiko Higashioka, Shoichiro Inokuchi, Hiroki Mitoma, Yasutaka Kimoto, Mitsuteru Akahoshi, Nobuyuki Ono, Yojiro Arinobu, Koichi Akashi, Takahiko Horiuchi, Hiroaki Niiro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: CD226, an activating receptor expressed on the surface of natural killer (NK) cells and T cells, is also seen on B cells and CD226 polymorphism is associated with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). Because the specific roles of CD226+ B cells in SLE are still unknown, we investigated the association of CD226+ B cells with SLE. Methods: We measured CD226 expression on B cells and its subsets using flow cytometry in 48 SLE patients and 24 healthy controls (HCs). We assessed the relationships between CD226+ B cells and SLE Disease Activity Index 2000 (SLEDAI-2K), clinical manifestations, laboratory data, and prognosis after 12 months. Results: The proportions of CD226+ cells in whole B cells and all its subsets were significantly higher in SLE patients than HCs. In SLE patients, the proportions of CD226+ B cells and CD226+ switched-memory (SM) B cells were significantly correlated with SLEDAI-2K scores and anti-dsDNA antibody titers, and negatively correlated with serum complement levels. Moreover, basal percentages of CD226+ B cells and CD226+ SM B cells were low in patients who were in Lupus Low Disease Activity State after 12 months. In patients with renal involvement, the proportion of CD226+ B cells increased. Additionally, the proportion of CD226+ B cells was higher in patients who were not in complete renal remission after 12 months. Conclusions: Increased proportion of CD226+ B cells was associated with disease activity and prognosis of SLE. CD226+ B cells may be a useful biomarker for the management of SLE.

Original languageEnglish
Article number713225
JournalFrontiers in Immunology
Publication statusPublished - Jul 21 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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