Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) exposure drives antibody responses, but whether patients with active tuberculosis elicit protective antibodies, and against which antigens, is still unclear. Here we generate monoclonal antibodies from memory B cells of one patient to investigate the B cell responses during active infection. The antibodies, members of four distinct B cell clones, are directed against the Mtb phosphate transporter subunit PstS1. Antibodies p4-36 and p4-163 reduce Mycobacterium bovis-BCG and Mtb levels in an ex vivo human whole blood growth inhibition assay in an FcR-dependent manner; meanwhile, germline versions of p4-36 and p4-163 do not bind Mtb. Crystal structures of p4-36 and p4-170, complexed to PstS1, are determined at 2.1 Å and 2.4 Å resolution, respectively, to reveal two distinctive PstS1 epitopes. Lastly, a prophylactic p4-36 and p4-163 treatment in Mtb-infected Balb/c mice reduces bacterial lung burden by 50%. Our study shows that inhibitory anti-PstS1 B cell responses arise during active tuberculosis.
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