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Am J Pathol. 2000 Oct;157(4):1239-46.

Antibody-mediated resolution of light chain-associated amyloid deposits.

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Human Immunology and Cancer Program, Department of Medicine, University of Tennessee Graduate School of Medicine, Knoxville, Tennessee, USA.


Primary light-chain-associated (AL) amyloidosis is characterized by the deposition in tissue of monoclonal light chains as fibrils. With rare exception, this process is seemingly irreversible and results in progressive organ dysfunction and eventually death. To determine whether immune factors can effect amyloid removal, we developed an experimental model in which mice were injected with amyloid proteins extracted from the spleens or livers of patients with AL amyloidosis. Notably, the resultant amyloidomas were rapidly resolved, as compared to controls, when animals received injections of an anti-light-chain monoclonal antibody having specificity for an amyloid-related epitope. The reactivity of this monoclonal antibody was not dependent on the V(L) or C(L) isotype of the fibril, but rather seemed to be directed toward a beta-pleated sheet conformational epitope expressed by AL and other amyloid proteins. The amyloidolytic response was associated with a pronounced infiltration of the amyloidoma with neutrophils and putatively involved opsonization of fibrils by the antibody, leading to cellular activation and release of proteolytic factors. The demonstration that AL amyloid resolution can be induced by passive administration of an amyloid-reactive antibody has potential clinical benefit in the treatment of patients with primary amyloidosis and other acquired or inherited amyloid-associated disorders.

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