Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Microbiology and Immunology


Aging impacts multiple organ systems, and specifically causes the immune system to lose its ability to efficiently fight off infections. Regarding immunity, aging research predominantly focuses on the adaptive immune system. B cells, which mediate the humoral arm of the adaptive immune system, develop throughout life in the bone marrow where microenvironmental `niches' are important. The bone marrow does not exactly `atrophy' with age; however, studies comparing young and old mice demonstrate an age-related change in the bone marrow B cell subpopulations.

The overall goal was to determine if femoral and sternum bone marrow have different plasma cell composition and growth factor production that may affect antibody production and secretion. This study sought to determine the effects that age and cellular origin have on the bone marrow microenvironment. The conclusions drawn from this work will help expand the known mechanisms required for an efficient humoral response in the host.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.