Forty-one sera of patients with IDDM (insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus) containing complement-fixing islet cell antibodies were analyzed for their ability to activate TCC (terminal complement complex). Eighteen sera were found to promote deposition of TCC on human islets of pancreatic cryostat sections with a nonhomogeneous pattern of distribution corresponding to that of insulin. Activation of TCC by IDDM serum and binding of this complex to islet cells was confirmed using purified islets. Flow cytometric analysis of islet cell treated with a TCC + IDDM serum showed IgG binding to the cell surface. The same serum had a cytotoxic effect on islet cells in the presence of human C. These results obtained with a homologous system of C activation by IDDM sera suggest that TCC may contribute, at least in part, to the pancreatic β cell damage.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine