Relationship between naturally occurring human antibodies to casein and autologous antiidiotypic antibodies: Implications for the network theory

Charlotte Cunningham-Rundles, Zhi Kun Feng, Zhuo Zhou, Kenneth R. Woods

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations

Abstract

Previous studies on human autologous antiidiotypes have been based largely upon analyses of autoimmune disease. We have previously described polyclonal, naturally occurring human antoantibodies directed against antibodies with specificity toward bovine casein in the sera of IgA-deficient humans. In order to define this system more exactly we have now produced two murine monoclonal antibodies directed against bovine milk κ-casein to use as clonal tools to identify specific antiidiotypes in these human sera. Kappa-casein is an important part of the casein micelle in milk and cheese; in addition to being an important immunogen for man, κ-casein is known to have conserved amino acid sequence and two antigenic epitopes. Data presented here show that the serum of up to 74% of IgA-deficient and 10% of normal humans have specific autologous antiidiotypes in their serum which bind to monoclonal antibodies directed to bovine κ-casein. These human antibodies [intact or F(ab)′2] can be blocked from binding to the monoclonal anti-κ-caseins by pure bovine κ-casein or the κ-casein peptide fragment. In contrast to previous studies in autoimmune disease, serum levels of the autoantiidiotypes were directly proportional to the level of IgG antibody to bovine κ-casein. These observations suggest that continual exposure to a ubiquitous dietary antigen may produce an antigen driven system in which stimulation of both Ab1 and Ab2 occurs in concert.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)279-290
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Clinical Immunology
Volume11
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1991
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • IgA deficiency
  • antiidiotypes
  • gastrointestinal absorption
  • milk proteins

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