Clinical Immunotherapeutics

, Volume 1, Issue 3, pp 169–172 | Cite as

Glycosylation of Immunoglobulins

Prospects for Diagnosis and Therapy in Rheumatology
  • Clarissa Pilkington
  • Graham Rook
  • David A. Isenberg
Leading Article


Agalactosyl IgG [Gal(0)] is a glycoform of IgG that is found in normal individuals. Its level is raised in several diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis, tuberculosis and Crohn’s disease. The function of Gal(0) is not yet known. It may play a regulatory role within the immune system, or have some effector function.

Gal(0) levels not only reflect disease activity in rheumatoid arthritis, but are also predictive for disease development. It is conceivable that rheumatoid arthritis, as well as other diseases involving arthritis, increased antibody production and high Gal(0) levels, might be due to an infection with a cell wall-deficient mycobacterium.

There is evidence that interleukin-6 is associated with these diseases. Further research is needed to show whether raised interleukin-6 and Gal(0) are epiphenomena, or whether they are important in the pathogenesis of diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis. In the latter case a new approach to treatment could become possible.


Rheumatoid Arthritis Leprosy Acute Rheumatic Fever Oligosaccharide Chain Rheumatoid Arthri 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Adis International Limited 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • Clarissa Pilkington
    • 1
  • Graham Rook
    • 1
  • David A. Isenberg
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of MicrobiologyUniversity College LondonLondonEngland
  2. 2.Department of MedicineUniversity College LondonLondonEngland

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