New insights into the pathophysiology and in vivo function of IgG Fc receptors through gene deletion studies
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Fc-receptors for IgG (Fc gammaRs) are critically involved at multiple stages of an immune response, ranging from antigen presentation and regulation of antibody production to the end-stage effector mechanisms of inflammation. Immunolglobulin G autoantibodies that are detectable in the majority of autoimmune diseases are ligands for Fc gammaRs. The three classes, Fc gammaRI, Fc gammaRII, and Fc gammaRIII, vary in their antibody affinity, cellular expression and in vivo function. We review the current knowledge on regulation and diverse functions of the distinct Fc gammaRs and describe the evidence of their important immunoregulatory roles in autoimmunity based on recent work in animal models.
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Ulrich Baumann, Department of Clinical Immunology, Hannover Medical School, Carl-Neuberg-Str. 1, D-30625 Hanover, Germany