• The role of sulfoglucuronosyl glycosphingolipids in the pathogenesis of monoclonal IgM paraproteinemia and peripheral neuropathy

      Ariga, Toshio; Institute of Molecular Medicine and Genetics (2011-07-25)
      In IgM paraproteinemia and peripheral neuropathy, IgM M-protein secretion by B cells leads to a T helper cell response, suggesting that it is antibody-mediated autoimmune disease involving carbohydrate epitopes in myelin sheaths. An immune response against sulfoglucuronosyl glycosphingolipids (SGGLs) is presumed to participate in demyelination or axonal degeneration in the peripheral nervous system (PNS). SGGLs contain a 3-sulfoglucuronic acid residue that interacts with anti-myelin-associated glycoprotein (MAG) and the monoclonal antibody anti-HNK-1. Immunization of animals with sulfoglucuronosyl paragloboside (SGPG) induced anti-SGPG antibodies and sensory neuropathy, which closely resembles the human disease. These animal models might help to understand the disease mechanism and lead to more specific therapeutic strategies. In an in vitro study, destruction or malfunction of the blood-nerve barrier (BNB) was found, resulting in the leakage of circulating antibodies into the PNS parenchyma, which may be considered as the initial key step for development of disease.