Journal article

Role of secretory component, a secreted glycoprotein, in the specific uptake of IgA dimer by epithelial cells

The binding of secretory component (SC) to epithelial cells and its role in the specific uptake of immunoglobulin A (IgA) dimer has been studied in rabbit mammary gland and liver. SC, Mr approximately 80,000, secreted by epithelial cells of the mammary gland was found associated with the cell surface of mammary cells in intact tissue. Dispersed mammary cells and plasma membrane-enriched fractions obtained from mammary glands of midpregnant rabbits bound 125I-labeled SC in a saturable time- and temperature-dependent process. The association rate followed a second order reversible reaction (k+1 approximately equal to 2.7 x 10(6) M-1 min-1 at 4 degrees C) and equilibrium was reached in about 4 h at 4 degrees C. The dissociation rate for membranes was first order (k-1 approximately equal to 1.7 x 10(-2) min-1 at 4 degrees C), whereas displacement from cells was incomplete. The apparent affinity constant was similar for membranes and cells (Ka approximately equal to 5 x 10(8) M-1) with one class of binding sites. The number of binding sites varied from one animal to another (260 to 7,000 sites/mammary cell) in relation to endogenous occupancy by SC, which was assessed by immunocytochemistry and complement-mediated cytotoxicity. Rabbit liver and heart membranes did not bind SC, and serum proteins present in rabbit milk failed to interact with mammary cells or membranes. Mammary membranes or cells and liver membranes bound 125I-labeled IgA dimer in a saturable, reversible time- and temperature-dependent process. Association and dissociation rate constants at 4 degrees C (k+1 approximately equal to 5 x 10(6) M-1 min-1 and k-1 approximately equal to 5 x 10(-3) min-1, respectively) and the apparent affinity constant (Ka approximately equal to 10(9) M-1) were similar for liver and mammary membranes; these parameters differed, however, from those reported for free SC-IgA dimer interaction. The binding capacity of membranes for IgA dimer was directly related to the amount of free SC bound to membranes. Interaction of IgA dimer with mammary or liver membranes or cells was abrogated by excess of free SC and was prevented by preincubation of membranes or cells with Fab antibody fragments directed against SC. These data indicate that the first step in the translocation process of polymeric immunoglobulins across epithelia consists of binding of SC to the surface of epithelial cells which in turn acts as a receptor for the specific uptake of IgA dimer.


    • GR-KUHN-ARTICLE-1979-002

    Record created on 2008-02-25, modified on 2016-08-08


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