A1 Journal article (refereed)
Compensatory IgM to the Rescue : Patients with Selective IgA Deficiency Have Increased Natural IgM Antibodies to MAA–LDL and No Changes in Oral Microbiota (2021)

Mella, M. A., Lavrinienko, A., Akhi, R., Hindström, R., Nissinen, A. E., Wang, C., Kullaa, A., Salo, T., Auvinen, J., Koskimäki, J. J., & Hörkkö, S. (2021). Compensatory IgM to the Rescue : Patients with Selective IgA Deficiency Have Increased Natural IgM Antibodies to MAA–LDL and No Changes in Oral Microbiota. ImmunoHorizons, 5(4), 170-181. https://doi.org/10.4049/immunohorizons.2100014

JYU authors or editors

Publication details

All authors or editorsMella, Miia A.; Lavrinienko, Anton; Akhi, Ramin; Hindström, Rasmus; Nissinen, Antti E.; Wang, Chunguang; Kullaa, Arja; Salo, Tuula; Auvinen, Juha; Koskimäki, Janne J.; et al.

Journal or seriesImmunoHorizons


Publication year2021

Publication date01/04/2021


Issue number4

Pages range170-181

PublisherThe American Association of Immunologists

Publication countryUnited States

Publication languageEnglish


Publication open accessOpenly available

Publication channel open accessOpen Access channel

Publication is parallel published (JYX)https://jyx.jyu.fi/handle/123456789/75398


IgA is the most abundant Ab in the human body. However, most patients with selective IgA deficiency (SIgAD) are asymptomatic. IgM, and to lesser extent IgG Abs, are generally presumed to compensate for the lack of IgA in SIgAD by multiplying and adopting functions of IgA. We used data from the Northern Finland Birth Cohort 1966 to investigate whether SIgAD patients have differences in levels of natural Abs to oxidized epitopes compared with 20 randomly selected healthy controls. First, we screened the saliva and serum samples from the Northern Finland Birth Cohort 1966 cohort (n = 1610) for IgA concentration. We detected five IgA-deficient subjects, yielding a prevalence of 0.3%, which is consistent with the general prevalence of 0.25% in the Finnish population. To detect natural Abs, we used malondialdehyde acetaldehyde–low-density lipoprotein (MAA–LDL), an Ag known to bind natural Abs. In this study, we show that natural secretory IgM and IgG Abs to MAA–DL were significantly increased in subjects with SIgAD. Given that secretory IgA is an important part of mucosal immune defense and that, in the gut microbiota, dysbiosis with SIgAD patients has been observed, we characterized the oral bacterial microbiota of the subjects with and without SIgAD using high-throughput 16S rRNA gene sequencing. We found no significant alterations in diversity and composition of the oral microbiota in subjects with SIgAD. Our data suggest that increased levels of secretory natural Abs in patients with SIgAD could be a compensatory mechanism, providing alternative first-line defense against infections and adjusting mucosal milieu to maintain a healthy oral microbiota.

Keywordsimmunologyimmunological deficiency syndromesantibodiesmicrobiomemucous membranesmouth

Contributing organizations

Ministry reportingYes

Reporting Year2021

JUFO rating1

Last updated on 2024-03-04 at 20:16