The therapeutic benefit of B cell depletion in patients with rheumatoid arthritis has provided proof of concept that B cells are relevant for the pathogenesis of arthritis. It remains unknown which B cell effector functions contribute to the induction or chronification of arthritis. We studied the clinical and immunological effects of B cell depletion in glucose-6-phosphate isomerase-induced arthritis. We targeted CD22 to deplete B cells. Mice were depleted of B cells before or after immunization with glucose-6-phosphate isomerase (G6PI). The clinical and histological effects were studied. G6PI-specific antibody responses were measured by ELISA. G6PI-specific T helper (Th) cell responses were assayed by polychromatic flow cytometry. B cell depletion prior to G6PI-immunization prevented arthritis. B cell depletion after immunization ameliorated arthritis, whereas B cell depletion in arthritic mice was ineffective. Transfer of antibodies from arthritic mice into B cell depleted recipients did not reconstitute arthritis. B cell depleted mice harbored much fewer G6PI-specific Th cells than control animals. B cell depletion prevents but does not cure G6PI-induced arthritis. Arthritis prevention upon B cell depletion is associated with a drastic reduction in the number of G6PI-specific effector Th cells.