Heavy-chain-only antibody expression and B-cell development in the mouse.

TitleHeavy-chain-only antibody expression and B-cell development in the mouse.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2006
AuthorsBr├╝ggemann, M., J. A. Smith, M. J. Osborn, D. Corcos, X. Zou, V. Khong Nguyen, and S. Muyldermans
JournalCrit Rev Immunol
Date Published2006
KeywordsAnimals, Antibodies, B-Lymphocytes, Cell Differentiation, Gene Expression Regulation, Humans, Immunoglobulin Heavy Chains, Mice

Antibodies expressed in mice, humans, and most mammals consist of paired heavy (H) and light (L) chains. Cellular release of single H-chains without L-chains is prevented by chaperone association and retention in the endoplasmic reticulum. Consequently, H-chain-only antibodies are absent, except in pathological conditions known as Heavy Chain Disease, where they occur in mutated form. An exception to this is found in the serum of Camelidae. Homodimeric H-chain antibodies in camelids lack the first constant region domain (CH1) of the H-chain but retain an otherwise intact H-chain polypeptide, thus maintaining antigen specificity and effector functions. In this review, we summarize how H-chain antibodies can be expressed in mice, and whether normal developmental processes leading to antibody expression without L-chain are retained.

Alternate JournalCrit. Rev. Immunol.
PubMed ID17341184