B cells have been shown to function as APCs capable of inducing both T cell priming and tolerization. Recently, B cells were also revealed to be essential in the organogenesis of Payer's patches (PPs), which have been supposed to play an important role in the initiation of mucosal immune responses. In this study, we examined the roles of B cells in T cell response to orally adiministrated antigen using B-cell-deficient mice. It was revealed that (1) both a single high dose and repeated low doses of orally administered OVA successfully induced tolerance of T cells in B-cell-deficient mice and (2) oral administration of OVA with cholera toxin successfully primed T cells in B-cell-deficient mice. Thus, it was revealed that B cells are not required for both priming and tolerization of T cells to orally administered antigens. These results also contradict the supposed roles of PPs in mucosal immune responses.
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