Recognition of antigen by the B cell receptor (BCR) is crucial to the adaptive immune response and, ultimately, defending the body from foreign pathogens. B cell receptors bind to pathogens and other material in the blood and lymph and subsequently send chemical signals informing the rest of the cell. A complex network of proteins regulates BCR signaling. We explore the spatial organization of these proteins in the plasma membrane using two color super-resolution microscopy. Below, the image shows the locations of BCR (in red) and Lyn kinase (in green) in a fixed B cell after antigen stimulation.
We are investigating whether the BCR couples to plasma membrane lipid ordering during antigen stimulation. This coupling may act to regulate BCR signaling by organizing membrane-bound regulatory proteins around the BCR.