Expression of B Cell and Immunoglobulin Transcripts Is a Feature of Inflammation in Late Allografts


Corresponding author: P. F. Halloran,


To assess the significance of B-cell and plasma cell infiltrates in renal allografts, we compared expression of B-cell-associated transcripts (BATs) and immunoglobulin transcripts (IGTs) to histopathology and function in 177 renal allograft biopsies for clinical indications. BAT and IGT expression correlated with immunostaining for B cells and plasma cells and with expression of B-cell and plasma cell transcription factors. BATs and IGTs were increased in both T-cell-mediated and antibody-mediated rejection. BAT and IGT scores were strongly related to time posttransplant: biopsies <5 months expressed less BATs and did not express increased IGTs. In contrast, T-cell-associated transcripts were independent of time posttransplant. In biopsies ≥5 months, BAT and IGT scores correlated with interstitial inflammation, tubular atrophy and interstitial fibrosis. By regression tree analysis, the only variables independently correlated with BATs and IGTs were time and inflammation. Expression of BATs and IGTs correlated with renal function, but this relationship was due to differences in early versus late biopsies: BATs and IGTs were not related to function or future function after correcting for time.