IgG subclasses 1, 3 and 4 in sera from herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) seropositive donors were separated and their functions assayed. The main neutralizing activity to HSV-1 was found in the IgG1 fractions. Both IgG3 and IgG4 possessed higher neutralizing titres than IgG1 in relation to the respective HSV IgG subclass enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) titre. Addition of complement resulted in a strong enhancement of IgG3 neutralizing activity. HSV neutralizations by IgG1 and, surprisingly, IgG4 were also somewhat enhanced by complement. With the addition of complement, the contribution to neutralizing activity of IgG3 was calculated to increase from 31 to 40% of total IgG in HSV neutralization in native sera. The avidities of the IgG fractions to HSV glycoprotein C (gC) were estimated in a few sera but could not be correlated to neutralization results. Antibody dependent cell-mediated cytotoxicity (ADCC) was detectable mainly in IgG1 and 3 fractions of sera with high anti-HSV antibody titres
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