A decrease in reactive disulfide bonds of serum IgG signals a characteristic change in the IgG subclass patterns of rats bearing experimental tumors

International Archives of Allergy and Immunology
M WeblacherE Schauenstein


Previous studies have shown that human IgG1 contains a 'reactive' disulfide bridge (SS*), detectable by a 24-hour disulfide exchange reaction, and that the serum level of this IgG subclass is selectively diminished in patients with various malignant diseases. Here we present evidence that in rats IgG2b is the only subclass that carries one SS* per molecule. Furthermore, it is shown that rats inoculated with experimental tumor lines, i.e., the Yoshida hepatoma ascites tumor and the Walker 256 carcinosarcoma growing in ascites or as solid tumor, exhibit significantly decreased SS* per mole IgG which corresponds to a selective diminution of IgG2b. Although at later stages there is a quantitative correlation with the tumor burden, with the Walker tumor this effect becomes significant as early as 24 h after inoculation, i.e., well before exponential tumor growth and an absolute reduction of total IgG. Control animals injected intraperitoneally with either viable spleen cells or irradiated Walker 256 cells did not show comparable alterations in their IgG subclass profile. Thus, the selective defect of IgG2b requires the presence of viable and proliferating tumor cells. Possible mechanism(s) of tumor-associated shifts in IgG subclasse...Continue Reading


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