Immunologic Research

, Volume 49, Issue 1, pp 269–280

Immunologic aspects of monoclonal B-cell lymphocytosis


    • Department of MedicineDuke University Medical Center
  • J. Brice Weinberg
    • Department of MedicineDuke University Medical Center
    • Department of ImmunologyDuke University Medical Center
    • Durham Veterans Affairs Medical Center

DOI: 10.1007/s12026-010-8188-4

Cite this article as:
Lanasa, M.C. & Weinberg, J.B. Immunol Res (2011) 49: 269. doi:10.1007/s12026-010-8188-4


Monoclonal B-cell lymphocytosis (MBL) is a preclinical hematologic condition wherein small numbers of clonal B cells can be detected in the blood of otherwise healthy individuals. Most MBL have a surface immunophenotype nearly identical to that of chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), though other phenotypes can also be identified. MBL has been shown to be a precursor state for CLL, but most MBL clones are quite small and apparently have minimal potential to progress of CLL or other B-cell lymphoproliferative disorder (B-LPD). The investigation of MBL as a precursor state for CLL will likely lead to important insights into mechanisms of disease pathogenesis. The review will cover clinical and translational aspects of MBL, with a particular emphasis on the prevalence of MBL; the relationship between MBL, CLL, and other B-LPDs; and the capacity of MBL to modulate the normal B- and T-cell compartments.


Monoclonal B lymphocytosisChronic lymphocytic leukemiaNon-Hodgkin’s lymphomaB-cell receptorB-cell development

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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010