Article Abstract

Anti-donor immunoglobulin G subclass in liver transplantation

Authors: Vivian C. McAlister

Abstract

Immunoglobulin G (IgG) subclasses in human health and immunity have only be sporadically studied in the half century since their discovery. Different patterns of IgG subclass production are seen if the immune response is deviated towards type 1 versus type 2. The current state of our knowledge of IgG subclasses in liver transplantation is reviewed here. While several studies have been conducted in liver disease, only four relatively small studies have been undertaken in liver transplant recipients. Total IgG4 elevation in serum is related to sclerosing pancreatico-cholangiopathy that is sensitive to treatment with steroids. Conventional immunosuppressive regimes, especially with a combination of tacrolimus and sirolimus, reduce the production of all IgG subclasses after transplantation but it is not known if they deviate the immune response. Presence of anti-donor IgG3 before transplantation, or its expansion after transplantation, has been associated with rejection and liver graft loss. Anti-GSTT1 IgG4 production after transplantation is associated with de-novo immune hepatitis. Greater knowledge of anti-donor IgG subclass responses after transplantation will allow us tailor novel treatments for greater effect.