Transcription and RNA Processing

ID #1151

What exactly are plasma cells and b-cells? I know that from alternating splicing you are selectively choosing which exons to use to make protein form of a family of proteins? After transcription the RNA transcript is then translated into a protein IgM that is secreted if the protein is made in a plasma cell..is this right?


Our bodies have a wide variety of cell types in our immune systems, with each cell type contributing a set of tools to fight infections or problems. Plasma cells and B-cells are simply two members of that "family" of immune system cells. B-cells present antibody molecles (called Immunoglobulins, or Ig's) on their surfaces, by anchoring the proteins into the lipid bilayer. We've already talked about transmembrane proteins, so this concept should make sense. Plasma cells secrete, or export, the antibodies outside of the cell, not attached to the membrane. IgM is an antibody that is made in both cell types, but in slightly different "flavors." But there's still only one gene for IgM. Alternative splicing gives you different versions of the same type of protein--it's still an IgM molecule whether it's tethered to the membrane or not.

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