Secreted IgM (sIgM) is a multifunctional evolutionary conserved antibody that is critical for the maintenance of tissue homeostasis as well as the development of fully protective humoral responses to pathogens. Constitutive secretion of self- and polyreactive natural IgM, produced mainly by B-1 cells, provides a circulating antibody that engages with autoantigens as well as invading pathogens, removing apoptotic and other cell debris and initiating strong immune responses. Pathogen-induced IgM production by B-1 and conventional B-2 cells strengthens this early, passive layer of IgM-mediated immune defense and regulates subsequent IgG production. The varied effects of secreted IgM on immune homeostasis and immune defense are facilitated through its binding to numerous different cell types via different receptors. Recent studies identified a novel function for pentameric IgM, namely as a transporter for the effector protein ″apoptosis-inhibitor of macrophages″ (AIM/CD5L). This review aims to provide a summary of the known functions and effects of sIgM on immune homeostasis and immune defense, and its interaction with its various receptors, and to highlight the many critical immune regulatory functions of this ancient and fascinating immunoglobulin.
As a preformed defense system, complement faces a delicate challenge in providing an immediate, forceful response to pathogens even at first encounter, while sparing host cells in the process. For this purpose, it engages a tightly regulated network of plasma proteins, cell surface receptors, and regulators. Complement component C3 plays a particularly versatile role in this process by keeping the cascade alert, acting as a point of convergence of activation pathways, fueling the amplification of the complement response, exerting direct effector functions, and helping to coordinate downstream immune responses. In recent years, it has become evident that nature engages the power of C3 not only to clear pathogens but also for a variety of homeostatic processes ranging from tissue regeneration and synapse pruning to clearing debris and controlling tumor cell progression. At the same time, its central position in immune surveillance makes C3 a target for microbial immune evasion and, if improperly engaged, a trigger point for various clinical conditions. In our review, we look at the versatile roles and evolutionary journey of C3, discuss new insights into the molecular basis for C3 function, provide examples of disease involvement, and summarize the emerging potential of C3 as a therapeutic target.more » « less
- NSF-PAR ID:
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- Date Published:
- Journal Name:
- Immunological Reviews
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- p. 33-58
- Medium: X
- Sponsoring Org:
- National Science Foundation
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