UNIT 7.5 Isolation of Human B Cell Populations

  1. Gary P. Sims,
  2. Peter E. Lipsky

Published Online: 1 DEC 2006

DOI: 10.1002/0471142735.im0705s75

Current Protocols in Immunology

Current Protocols in Immunology

How to Cite

Sims, G. P. and Lipsky, P. E. 2006. Isolation of Human B Cell Populations. Current Protocols in Immunology. 75:I:7.5:7.5.1–7.5.11.

Author Information

  1. National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 1 DEC 2006
  2. Published Print: NOV 2006

This is not the most recent version of the article. View current version (1 AUG 2011)


To study the function and biology of human B cells, it is necessary to isolate pure populations. Historically, B cells were enriched by the sequential depletion of monocytes, natural killer cells, and T cells. However, this time-consuming process has been superseded by negative selection methods using antibody cocktails targeted against other cell types or by positive selection using antibodies targeting B cell markers such as CD19. Here we detail three methods of isolating B cells from human blood or mononuclear cells and describe how these techniques can be combined with fluorescent cell sorting for the characterization of specific B cell populations.


  • B cell;
  • CD19;
  • purification;
  • isolation;
  • negative selection;
  • magnetic separation