Autoantibody activity in Waldenström's macroglobulinemia

Marvin J. Stone, Giampaolo Merlini, Virginia Pascual

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Some monoclonal proteins from patients with Waldenström's macroglobulinemia (WM) or immunoglobulin (Ig) M monoclonal gamopathy of undetermined significance possess antigen-binding activity directed to autogenous or foreign antigens. These monoclonal IgM autoantibodies include cold agglutinins, mixed cryoglobulins, and antineural components. Because of the antigen-antibody interaction, patients with these autoimmune syndromes often present with hemolytic anemia, mixed cryoglobulinemia, or peripheral neuropathy, respectively, to an earlier stage than patients with typical WM who do not have evident antibody activity. The presence of monoclonal macroglobulin autoreactive antibodies thus influences clinical presentation and natural history. Monoclonal IgM antibodies display polyreactivity to antigens of microbial origin in addition to autogenous antigens and may arise through T-independent as well as T-dependent pathways. Waldenström proteins with antibody activity appear to provide a link between autoimmunity, infection, and lymphoproliferative disease. Study of the antigens reacting with monoclonal IgMs may provide further insight into the pathogenesis of WM.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)225-229
Number of pages5
JournalClinical Lymphoma
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2005


  • B-cells
  • Cold agglutinins
  • Cryoglobulinemia
  • Monoclonal gammopathy
  • Neuropathy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research


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