Agalactosyl IgG in aggregates from the rheumatoid joint

K. A. Leader, G. C. Lastra, J. R. Kirwan, C. J. Elson*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)


It has been postulated that agalactosyl immunoglobulin G (IgG) self-associates to form pathological aggregates in the rheumatoid joint. To examine this hypothesis, IgG aggregates from synovial fluid (SF) of 22 patients with RA were prepared by precipitation with polyethylene glycol (PEG) 6000. The PEG precipitates and SFs were reduced with 2-mercaptoethanol (2ME) and bound to protein G. This procedure isolated the IgG in the PEG precipitates from other contaminating glycosylated proteins. The levels of galactose and N-acetylglucosamine (GlcNAc) residues present on the reduced IgG were quantified by their ability to bind the lectins Ricinus communis RCA 120 and Bandeiraea simplicifolia (BS) II. Proportionally less galactose (expressed as a ratio of bound RCA 120 to BS II) was present on the IgG from the PEG precipitates than on the IgG in the paired SF (P = 0.001). However, in many cases more RCA 120 as well as BS II bound to IgG from PEG precipitates than from the corresponding SF. It is considered that agalactosyl IgG occurs preferentially in RA SF PEG precipitates and that this IgG may also exhibit increased Fab glycosylation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)335-341
Number of pages7
JournalBritish Journal of Rheumatology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 20 May 1996


  • Galactosylation
  • Glycosylation
  • IgG aggregates
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Synovial fluid


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