Preferential expression of IgG2b in nose draining cervical lymph nodes and its putative role in mucosal tolerance induction


  • Present address: Joop M. L. M. van Helvoort, Genomics Laboratory, University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrecht, The Netherlands.

Georg Kraal
Department of Molecular Cell Biology and Immunology
Vrije Universiteit Medical Center
PO Box 7057
1007MB Amsterdam
The Netherlands


Induction of intranasal tolerance prevents the body from eliciting unwanted immune responses against harmless antigens that enter the body through the nasal mucosa. To study the intrinsic capacities of the cervical, nose draining lymph nodes (CLN), which are essential for tolerance induction, genes that are differentially expressed in CLN and not in peripheral lymph nodes (PLN) were characterized. The gene that is predominantly overexpressed in CLN codes for IgG2b. This is confirmed by a higher percentage of IgG2b+ B220+ cells in CLN compared with any PLN. However, this predominance of IgG2b-positive B cells in the CLN is not specific for the lymph node itself but rather determined by the region drained by lymph nodes at the cervical site, as transplanted PLN at these locations show a comparable predominance. It was demonstrated that IgG2b, when compared with IgG1, led to differential activation of dendritic cells (DC) through Fc receptor signalling. The results point to a unique local combination of cells and factors in the nose draining CLN leading to highly specialized immune reactivity. The results point out that predominance of a distinct IgG isotype in a lymphoid environment may lead to highly specialized immune reactivity.