Preferential autoantibody reactivity of the preimmune B cell repertoire in normal mice

M. Souroujon, M. E. White-Scharf, J. Andre-Schwartz, M. L. Gefter, R. S. Schwartz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Naturally occurring autoantibodies are frequently found in the sera of healthy individuals. They usually exhibit low binding affinities for autoantigens and often react with multiple antigenic determinants. To determine whether their frequencies have been overestimated by sensitive testing procedures, the germ-line B cell repertoire of strain A mice was examined for reactivity with a panel of auto- and foreign Ag. If the high frequencies of autoantibodies result from testing procedures, equally high frequencies would be expected for foreign Ag specificities detected in the same manner. The presence of specific autoantibodies was confirmed in this study by the disparate frequencies observed for antibodies reactive with individual Ag. The frequencies were highest for autoantigens associated with SLE, indicating a bias toward autoreactivity in the preimmune repertoire. Analysis of V(H) gene usage did not indicate any selection in V gene expression with autoreactivity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4173-4179
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Immunology
Issue number12
StatePublished - 1988
Externally publishedYes


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