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auto-antibodies

Saturday 4 February 2006

Consequences

- Protein loss-of-function

- Cellular dysfunctions: In some cases, antibodies directed against cell-surface receptors impair or dysregulate function without causing cell injury or inflammation.

  • In myasthenia gravis, antibodies reactive with acetylcholine receptors in the motor end-plates of skeletal muscles impair neuromuscular transmission and therefore cause muscle weakness.
  • In Graves disease, antibodies against the thyroid-stimulating hormone receptor on thyroid epithelial cells stimulate the cells, resulting in hyperthyroidism (antibody-mediated stimulation of cell function)