Receptors for the Fc portion of immunoglobulin G (IgG; FcγRs) facilitate IgG uptake by effector cells as well as cellular responses initiated by IgG binding. In earlier studies, we demonstrated that amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) patient IgG can be taken up by motor neuron terminals and transported retrogradely to the cell body and can alter the function of neuromuscular synapses, such as increasing intracellular calcium and spontaneous transmitter release from motor axon terminals after passive transfer. In the present study, we examined whether FcγR-mediated processes can contribute to these effects of ALS patient immunoglobulins. F(ab′)2 fragments (which lack the Fc portion) of ALS patient IgG were not taken up by motor axon terminals and were not retrogradely transported. Furthermore, in a genetically modified mouse lacking the γ subunit of the FcR, the uptake of whole ALS IgG and its ability to enhance intracellular calcium and acetylcholine release were markedly attenuated. These data suggest that FcγRs appear to participate in IgG uptake into motor neurons as well as IgG-mediated increases in intracellular calcium and acetylcholine release from motor axon terminals.
- Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
- Fc receptor
- Immunoglobulin G
- Intracellular calcium
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