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In fibrosis fibroblasts are activated and overproduce collagen in a process with unknown drivers and equally unknown brakes that recently implicated a novel and surprising player, the B cell. B cells may be crucially involved in fibrosis in several ways: B cells may produce autoantibodies that can directly stimulate fibroblasts; B cells can produce profibrotic cytokines such as IL-6 or transforming growth factor beta; and, finally, B cells could directly stimulate fibroblasts by a contact-dependent mechanism. Recent experimental evidence suggests that B cells can enhance collagen production by fibroblasts, by a contact-dependent mechanism, and therefore are profibrotic ex vivo. These data strengthen the rationale of pursuing B-cell targeting therapies in systemic sclerosis. © 2013 BioMed Central Ltd.
Daoussis, D., & Liossis, S. N. C. (2013, November 28). B cells tell scleroderma fibroblasts to produce collagen. Arthritis Research and Therapy. https://doi.org/10.1186/ar4392