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Idiopathic pulmonary alveolar proteinosis as an autoimmune disease with neutralizing antibody against granulocyte/macrophage colony-stimulating factor.

Idiopathic pulmonary alveolar proteinosis (I-PAP) is a rare disease of unknown etiology in which the alveoli fill with lipoproteinaceous material. We report here that I-PAP is an autoimmune disease with neutralizing antibody of immunoglobulin G isotype against granulocyte/macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF). The antibody was found to be present in all specimens of bronchoalveolar lavage fluid obtained from 11 I-PAP patients but not in samples from 2 secondary PAP patients, 53 normal subjects, and 14 patients with other lung diseases. It specifically bound GM-CSF and neutralized bioactivity of the cytokine in vitro. The antibody was also found in sera from all I-PAP patients examined but not in sera from a secondary PAP patient or normal subjects, indicating that it exists systemically in I-PAP patients. As lack of GM-CSF signaling causes PAP in congenital cases and PAP-like disease in murine models, our findings strongly suggest that neutralization of GM-CSF bioactivity by the antibody causes dysfunction of alveolar macrophages, which results in reduced surfactant clearance.[1]

References

  1. Idiopathic pulmonary alveolar proteinosis as an autoimmune disease with neutralizing antibody against granulocyte/macrophage colony-stimulating factor. Kitamura, T., Tanaka, N., Watanabe, J., Uchida, n.u.l.l., Kanegasaki, S., Yamada, Y., Nakata, K. J. Exp. Med. (1999) [Pubmed]
 
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