Heinrich, Stefanie M.; Griese, Matthias:
Assessment of Surfactant Protein A (SP-A) dependent agglutination.
In: BMC Pulmonary Medicine
Background: Monomers of the collectin surfactant associated protein-A (SP-A) are arranged in trimers and higher oligomers. The state of oligomerization differs between individuals and likely affects SP-A's functional properties. SP-A can form aggregates together with other SP-A molecules. Here we report and assess a test system for the aggregate forming properties of SP-A in serum and broncho-alveolar lavage samples. Methods: Anti-SP-A antibodies fixed to latex beads bound SP-A at its N-terminal end and allowed the interaction with other SP-A molecules in a given sample by their C-terminal carbohydrate recognition domain (CRD) to agglutinate the beads to aggregates, which were quantified by light microscopy. Results: SP-A aggregation was dependent on its concentration, the presence of calcium, and was dose-dependently inhibited by mannose. Unaffected by the presence of SP-D no aggregation was observed in absence of SP-A. The more complex the oligomeric structure of SP-A present in a particular sample, the better was its capability to induce aggregation at a given total concentration of SP-A. SP-A in serum agglutinated independently of the pulmonary disease; in contrast SP-A in lung lavage fluid was clearly inferior in patients with chronic bronchitis and particularly with cystic fibrosis compared to controls. Conclusions: The functional status of SP-A with respect to its aggregating properties in serum and lavage samples can be easily assessed. SP-A in lung lavage fluid in patients with severe neutrophilic bronchitis was inferior.