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AIDS. 2005 Mar 4;19(4):381-9.

Increased levels of galactose-deficient IgG in sera of HIV-1-infected individuals.

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Department of Microbiology, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, Alabama, USA.



The IgG from sera of patients with chronic inflammatory diseases of autoimmune character or some chronic microbial infections is frequently deficient in galactose on N-linked glycans. However, this phenomenon has not been investigated at length in human viral infections.


To evaluate the glycosylation of serum IgG in HIV-1-positive patients.


Psathyrella velutina lectin was used in enzyme-linked immunosorbent and Western blot assays to determine glycosylation. In addition, gas-liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry were utilized to confirm the galactose deficiency observed in the lectin-binding assays.


HIV-1-infected individuals had significantly higher levels of galactose-deficient IgG than healthy controls. In fact, the galactose deficiency of the N-linked glycans observed in other diseases was even more profound in HIV-1 infection. This deficiency was primarily restricted to IgG when total serum glycoproteins were evaluated and IgG1 was the subclass most affected in all patients. Also, a significant increase in lectin binding was observed on IgG2 and IgG4 from HIV-1-positive females compared with HIV-1-negative females.


Identification of deficient galactosylation of serum IgG from HIV-1-infected patients extended the spectrum of diseases in which this phenomenon has been observed. In addition, the results suggest yet another aspect of immune dysfunction as a result of HIV-1 infection.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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