Immunological studies on the protein in human fetal red blood cells

Nicholson, Louise Veronica Berenice (1979) Immunological studies on the protein in human fetal red blood cells. MSc(R) thesis, University of Glasgow.

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This thesis is a report of immunological studies on the soluble protein inside human red blood cells. The differences shown by adult and fetal red cells in their physical structure, general metabolism and haemoglobin biochemistry were considered, together with the possibility of using red cells with their readily extractable intracellular soluble protein as an immunological model for tissue cells in general. Thus the two-fold aim of this research project was to investigate red cell protein as a tissue model and to look for novel fetal proteins in red cells by immunological methods. Antisera were prepared using red cell lysate protein as an immunogen. The antibody responses were determined principally by gel precipitation techniques, although some affinity chromatography (with analysis by polyacrylamide/SDS slab gel electrophoresis) and haemagglutination studies were also involved. Three sources of protein were used as immunogens in adult rabbits: unfractionated fetal lysate, unfractionated term cord lysate, and term cord lysate fractionated by ion-exchange chromatography so as to maximise recovery of non-haemoglobin red cell protein. Fetal lysate protein was also used to immunise two rabbits which had been neonatally tolerised to adult serum and red cells. In general, the results of the antibody analysis by gel precipitation could be divided into three categories of response: to contaminating serum proteins, to haemoglobin, and to other non-haemoglobin red cell proteins. Animals immunised with unfractionated lysates had a limited response to serum proteins whereas the ion-exchange fractionation concentrated certain serum proteins and this was reflected in an increased response to serum proteins. All the antisera showed a weak response to adult haemoglobin and a much stronger response to fetal haemoglobin possibly involving further antigenic determinants. A mobility antigen was detected in adult and fetal red cell lysates by two antisera; and an 2 mobility antigen, with erratic electrophoretic variants in fetal lysates, by a third. The existence of any novel non-haemoglobin protein in fetal red cells was not proved however. The results showed a rather limited antibody response to the many proteins known to be present in red blood cells. It was concluded that this could have been due to the inherent lack of immunogenicity associated with tissue cells, to the manner in which the immunogen was presented, or to the insensitivity of the methods used to detect the immune response.

Item Type: Thesis (MSc(R))
Qualification Level: Masters
Additional Information: Adviser: Roger Sutcliffe
Keywords: Immunology
Date of Award: 1979
Depositing User: Enlighten Team
Unique ID: glathesis:1979-72882
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 11 Jun 2019 11:06
Last Modified: 11 Jun 2019 11:06

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