Efficient isolation protocol for B and T lymphocytes from human palatine tonsils

Farzaneh Assadian, Karl Sandström, Göran Laurell, Catharina Svensson, Göran Akusjärvi, Tanel Punga

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Tonsils form a part of the immune system providing the first line of defense against inhaled pathogens. Usually the term “tonsils” refers to the palatine tonsils situated at the lateral walls of the oral part of the pharynx. Surgically removed palatine tonsils provide a convenient accessible source of B and T lymphocytes to study the interplay between foreign pathogens and the host immune system. This video protocol describes the dissection and processing of surgically removed human palatine tonsils, followed by the isolation of the individual B and T cell populations from the same tissue sample. We present a method, which efficiently separates tonsillar B and T lymphocytes using an antibody-dependent affinity protocol. Further, we use the method to demonstrate that human adenovirus infects specifically the tonsillar T cell fraction. The established protocol is generally applicable to efficiently and rapidly isolate tonsillar B and T cell populations to study the role of different types of pathogens in tonsillar immune responses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere53374
JournalJournal of Visualized Experiments
Issue number105
StatePublished - Nov 16 2015

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 Journal of Visualized Experiments.


  • Adenovirus
  • Flow cytometry
  • Human tonsils
  • Immunology
  • Immunology
  • Issue 105
  • Lymphocyte enrichment
  • Magneticactivated cell sorting
  • Tonsillar lymphocytes
  • Virology


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