Molecular-Cellular Interactions in the Secretory IgA System

  • S. S. Crago
  • S. J. Prince
  • R. Kulhavy
  • J. Mestecky
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 107)


The appearance of secretory-IgA (s-IgA) in external secretions is the result of the interaction between two cell types: plasma cells, which produce polymeric IgA (with J chain), and epithelial cells, which produce secretory component (SC) and facilitate the transport of the completed IgA molecule. It has been speculated that the accumulation of IgA plasmacytes in mucosal lamina propria and the interstitium of secretory glands is the consequence of a selective homing of IgA precursor cells from remote lymphoid tissue into secretory sites; this process may be mediated by the presence of SC on the surface of exocrine epithelial cells that attracts lymphoblasts bearing SC receptors (1–3). This contention is supported by observations of the lack of IgA cells in the exocrine lamina propria of an SC-deficient patient (4), and the detection of SC receptors on the surface of porcine lymphocytes (5).


Peripheral Blood Lymphocyte Lymphoblastoid Cell Line Human Peripheral Blood Lymphocyte Secretory Component Mucosal Lamina Propria 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1978

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. S. Crago
    • 1
  • S. J. Prince
    • 1
  • R. Kulhavy
    • 1
  • J. Mestecky
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Microbiology and Institute of Dental ResearchUniversity of Alabama in BirminghamBirminghamUSA

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