Elevation of plasma immunoglobulin A in the spontaneously hypertensive rat.
Prior studies describe deficiencies of T-cell-mediated immunity in the spontaneously hypertensive rat (SHR) strain of Okamoto and Aoki. This report describes an alteration of humoral immunity: elevation of the plasma concentration of immunoglobulin (Ig) A and of circulating IgA autoantibodies to single-stranded DNA, double-stranded DNA, and thyroglobulin. The increased plasma IgA levels are evident in prehypertensive SHR, hence not secondary to the hypertension, and they result mainly from increments in polymeric IgA. Plasma IgA content also varied concordantly with the level of systolic blood pressure as influenced by age (older > younger) and gender (male > female) in both the SHR and control Wistar-Kyoto rat strains. Strain differences in plasma IgG or IgM were not observed. Studies of peripheral blood lymphocytes indicate that increased production of IgA is one mechanism for the increment in plasma content. The number of blood lymphocytes capable of producing IgA in vitro in response to the mitogen lipopolysaccharide is increased in SHR. When cultured in the absence or presence of lipopolysaccharide, peripheral blood lymphocytes of SHR secrete more IgA in vitro than do cells of the control strain. No significant strain differences in biliary or renal excretion of IgA were observed. The observed alterations of IgA in the SHR either are causative factors in the development of the hypertension or are the products of an epiphenomenon in which IgA and blood pressure are affected separately, but in parallel, by causative factors related to rat strain, age, and gender.
- Copyright © 1993 by American Heart Association