Published May 1, 1977 - More info
This study describes two sensitive, rapid, relatively simple, competitive inhibition radioimmunoassays for detecting immune complex. The tests are based on the inhibition of I125-Clq or I125-monoclonal rheumatoid factor (mRF) binding to an insoluble substrate, IgG-Sepharose. The assays can be performed in 5 h utilizing 10 micronl of serum. Heating of serum is not required and polyclonal rheumatoid factors do not interefere. With the two assays, a wide range of complexes of various size and complement fixing activity can be detected. The Clq test can detect complement fixing Ig complexes larger than 19S, while the mRF tests detect complexes of IgG as small as 8S irrespective of their complement fixing activity. Mouse, rabbit, and human aggregated IgG (agg IgG) can be detected in the Clq test, and human and rabbit agg IgG in the mRF test. As low as 4 microng/ml of isolated human agg IgG can be detected in the Clq test and 0.5 microng/ml in the rheumatoid factor test. Sensitivity is greater for mouse agg IgG. For pathologic sera which must be diluted to eliminate interfering factors, the sensitivity of the assay is approximately 10 times less. The Clq test showed marked inhibition by systemic lupus erythematosus sera with close correlation with CH50 levels and disease activity. The mRF test showed better correlation with rheumatoid arthritis sera. In addition, anionic macromolecules known to react with Clq and other Clq reactants that occur in pathologic sera such as the "low molecular weight" substances in systemic lupus erythematosus are also detected. These reactants are not detectable in the mRF test and can be eliminated in the Clq test by performing the test at higher ionic strength. The tests can be applied to the study of a variety of pathologic states where immune complexes appear to play a role.