Secretory IgA is the predominant class of Ig found in human breast milk. This class of non-inflammatory Ig inhibits microbial colonization through decreased adherence of bacteria and viruses to mucosal surfaces and thereby protects against gut and respiratory infections in breastfed children . IgA can also trap food antigens, leading to immune exclusion of dietary antigens by favouring degradation
by pancreatic enzymes . In addition to immune exclusion, IgA can exert immunoregulatory effects [17–20]. The epidemiological evidence of food allergy prevention by IgA [48–51] might be explained by AZD6244 these two mechanisms. As the majority of inhaled antigens reach the gut , the presence of milk-borne Der p-specific IgA may then protect the newborn
from respiratory allergens as proposed for food allergens. Notably, we found anti-Der p IgA in all colostrum samples tested. The range of values was broad, and we did not observe significant differences in antibody concentrations between atopic and non-atopic mothers. One previous study assessed the presence of IgA to cat allergen in human breast milk from atopic and non-atopic mothers. This study also found a similar concentration of IgA in both groups . The absence of an effect of atopy on IgA levels could be explained by the fact that IgA class switching depends mainly on the presence of TGF-β . In fact, we found similar levels of TGF-β in colostrum of atopic and non-atopic mothers, and we observed that both total IgA and Der p-specific Selleckchem LY2109761 IgA levels correlated with TGF-β levels in colostrum (Figure S1). In addition to IgA specific for respiratory allergen, our study demonstrated, for the first time, the presence of Der p-specific IgG in colostrum. Der p-specific IgG concentrations were higher in colostrum from atopic mothers compared to non-atopic mothers, and colostrum levels correlated with maternal IgE serum levels. It is worth noting Paclitaxel molecular weight that colostrum Der p-specific IgG concentration correlated with maternal serum IgG levels in the non-atopic
but not in the atopic group. IgG in colostrum could come from maternal serum, as supported by the observation that intravenous administration of Ig to immunodeficient mothers results in the presence of Ig in breast milk . In addition, IgG maybe synthesized locally in the mammary gland. The latter mechanism may operate in the atopic group because there was no correlation between maternal serum and colostrum Der p-specific IgG levels in that group. Studies in rodents suggest that, as in the placenta, FcRn can be involved in IgG transfer across mammary gland epithelium . Notably, in contrast to IgA that stays in the gut lumen, anti-Der p IgG can then be transferred to the neonate by FcRn expressed in the human proximal intestine [39, 56].