Sera of localized juvenile periodontitis (LJP) patients colonized by Actinobacillus actinomycetemcomitans serotype b often contain markedly elevated levels of immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibodies to serospecific determinants in the O polysaccharide of lipopolysaccharide (LPS), as well as to outer membrane proteins of this species. IgG antibodies in LJP sera are known to opsonize A. actinomycetemcomitans for subsequent phagocytosis and killing by human neutrophils. The objective of this study was to determine whether outer membrane proteins or serospecific determinants in LPS are the primary target for opsonic IgG antibodies in LJP sera. An A. actinomycetemcomitans serotype b O-polysaccharide affinity column was constructed and subsequently used to purify LPS-specific IgG antibodies from LJP serum. The affinity-purified anti-LPS IgG antibodies were enriched in content of IgG2 (66.2%, compared with 37.0% in the total IgG fraction) and were immunospecific for A. actinomycetemcomitans serotype b LPS. In an opsonophagocytic assay using neutrophils from donors who were homozygous for the H131 allotype of Fcy receptor IIa (CD32), it was found that LPS-specific IgG antibodies exhibited substantially greater opsonic activity toward A. actinomycetemcomitans serotype b than an LJP IgG fraction that was depleted of LPS-reactive antibodies but contained antibodies against outer membrane proteins of this species. The results of this study indicate that serospecific determinants in the O polysaccharide of A. actinomycetemcomitans serotype b are a principal target for opsonic antibodies in sera of LJP subjects
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