Induction of "wire-loop" lesions by murine monoclonal IgG3 cryoglobulins

Kidney Int. 1992 Jan;41(1):65-72. doi: 10.1038/ki.1992.9.


We have recently demonstrated that an IgG3 rheumatoid factor (RF) monoclonal antibody (mAb), clone 6-19, derived from unmanipulated autoimmune MRL/MpJ-lpr/lpr mice, is able to generate cryoglobulins via a non-immunological IgG3 Fc interaction, and to induce an acute glomerulonephritis associated with cryoglobulinemia. Using this experimental model, we have characterized the glomerular lesions induced by the 6-19 RF monoclonal cryoglobulin, in particular the ultrastructural localization of the cryoglobulin deposits. Although their initial localization was confined to the mesangium, the 6-19 cryoglobulins were progressively accumulated in the subendothelial spaces of glomerular capillary walls, leading to the formation of glomerular lesions resembling the "wire-loop" lesion characteristically described for lupus nephritis. In addition, we have found that identical glomerular "wire-loop" lesions were induced by the 6-19-J558 hybrid antibody, composed of the 6-19 gamma 3 heavy chain and J558 lambda 1 light chain, which loses the RF activity, but retains the cryoglobulin activity. These results strongly suggest that the direct deposition of IgG3 cryoglobulins by itself, without involvement of immune complex formation, results in the generation of the classical "wire-loop" lesion characteristic of lupus nephritis. In addition, we have found that similar "wire-loop" lesions were generated by one anti-DNA mAb derived from (NZB x NZW)F1 hybrid mice, and two of four IgG3 mAb of unknown specificities, derived from MRL/MpJ-lpr/lpr mice. The absence of significant glomerular lesions, in spite of large amounts of cryoglobulins, in mice receiving two IgG3 mAb suggests the importance of physicochemical property of cryoglobulins to provoke glomerular lesions.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / administration & dosage
  • Cryoglobulins / administration & dosage*
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Glomerulonephritis / etiology*
  • Glomerulonephritis / immunology
  • Glomerulonephritis / pathology
  • Immunoglobulin G / administration & dosage*
  • Lupus Nephritis / etiology
  • Lupus Nephritis / immunology
  • Lupus Nephritis / pathology
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Microscopy, Electron
  • Rheumatoid Factor / administration & dosage


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Cryoglobulins
  • Immunoglobulin G
  • Rheumatoid Factor