Julia M Hillegas

Cornell University, Итак, New York, United States

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Publications (5)7.42 Total impact

  • Bettina Wagner · Julia M Hillegas · Susanna Babasyan
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    ABSTRACT: CD23, also called FcεRII, is the low-affinity receptor for IgE and has first been described as a major receptor regulating IgE responses. In addition, CD23 also binds to CD21, integrins and MHC class II molecules and thus has a much wider functional role in immune regulation ranging from involvement in antigen-presentation to multiple cytokine-like functions of soluble CD23. The role of CD23 during immune responses of the horse is less well understood. Here, we expressed equine CD23 in mammalian cells using a novel IL-4 expression system. Expression resulted in high yield of recombinant IL-4/CD23 fusion protein which was purified and used for the generation of monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) to equine CD23. Seven anti-CD23 mAbs were further characterized. The expression of the low-affinity IgE receptor on equine peripheral blood mononuclear cells was analyzed by flow cytometric analysis. Cell surface staining showed that CD23 is mainly expressed by a subpopulation of equine B-cells. Only a very few equine T-cells or monocytes expressed CD23. CD23(+) B-cells were either IgM(+) or IgG1(+) cells. All CD23(+) cells were also positive for cell surface IgE staining suggesting in vivo IgE binding by the receptor. Two of the CD23 mAbs detected either the complete extracellular region of CD23 or a 22kDa cleavage product of CD23 by Western blotting. The new anti-CD23 mAbs provide valuable reagents to further analyze the roles of CD23 during immune responses of the horse in health and disease.
    No preview · Article · Feb 2012 · Veterinary Immunology and Immunopathology
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    ABSTRACT: Interleukin-10 (IL-10) terminates inflammatory immune responses and inhibits activation and effector functions of T-cells, monocytes, macrophages and dendritic cells. IL-10 has also been found to be a key cytokine expressed by subpopulations of regulatory T-cells. In this report, we describe the generation and characterization of three monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) to equine IL-10. The antibodies were found to be specific for equine IL-10 using different recombinant equine cytokine/IgG fusion proteins. Two of the anti-equine IL-10 mAbs were selected for ELISA to detect secreted IL-10 in supernatants of mitogen stimulated equine peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC). The sensitivity of the ELISA for detecting secreted IL-10 was found to be around 200pg/ml. The production of intracellular IL-10 was measured in equine PBMC by flow cytometry. PBMC were stimulated with phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA) and ionomycin in the presence of the secretion blocker Brefeldin A. All three anti-IL-10 mAbs detected a positive population in PMA stimulated lymphocytes which was absent in the medium controls. Around 80% of the IL-10(+) cells were CD4(+). Another 15% were CD8(+) cells. Double staining with IL-4 or interferon-gamma (IFN-gamma) indicated that PMA and ionomycin stimulation induced 80% IL-10(+)/IFN-gamma(+) lymphocytes, while only 5% IL-10(+)/IL-4(+) cells were observed. By calculation, at least 60% of the IL-10(+)/IFN-gamma(+) cells were CD4(+) lymphocytes. This expression profile corresponds to the recently described T regulatory 1 (T(R)1) cell phenotype. In summary, the new mAbs to equine IL-10 detected native equine IL-10 by ELISA and flow cytometry and can be used for further characterization of this important regulatory cytokine in horses.
    Preview · Article · Apr 2008 · Veterinary Immunology and Immunopathology
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    ABSTRACT: West Nile virus (WNV) is a zoonotic pathogen of global importance. In horses with neurological signs, detection of WNV-specific immunoglobulin M (IgM) in serum is widely used to identify clinical cases of WNV encephalitis. Here, we describe the development of two monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) to equine IgM which were used in a WNV IgM-specific enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Their performance was compared to an established assay based on polyclonal anti-IgM. Check test serum samples from the National Veterinary Service Laboratory (NVSL) were used to evaluate the performance of the three anti-IgM antibodies. The anti-IgM 1-22 mAb correctly identified all NVSL samples. Both the polyclonal antibody and monoclonal anti-IgM 2B-63 identified eight out of ten samples correctly. The three assays were then compared using serum samples from clinically healthy animals (n=33) and horses with neurological signs (n=21). High Spearman rank correlations (0.76-0.86) were found among the ELISA results. Inter-test agreements (weighted kappa) for assay interpretation resulted in strong agreement (0.95) of the results obtained by the mAbs and moderate agreements when monoclonal and polyclonal anti-IgM-based assays were compared. To determine the analytical sensitivities of anti-WNV IgM detection, serial dilutions of WNV IgM-positive serum samples were analyzed. The highest sensitivity was obtained by using the anti-IgM 1-22 mAb to capture IgM from equine serum. In conclusion, the use of monoclonal anti-IgM antibodies can improve the sensitivity of IgM detection in the acute phase of WN disease.
    No preview · Article · Apr 2008 · Veterinary Immunology and Immunopathology
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    ABSTRACT: In horses, allergies have been characterized by clinical signs and/or intradermal (i.d.) allergen testing. Our aim was to find the first direct evidence that immunoglobulin E (IgE) mediates equine allergy. In addition, we tested the hypothesis that immediate skin reactions in horses can also be mediated by IgG. Anti-IgE affinity columns were used to purify IgE from serum of one healthy horse and three horses affected with summer eczema, an allergic dermatitis which is believed to be induced by Culicoides midges. A modified Prausnitz-Küstner experiment was performed in four clinical healthy horses by i.d. injection of the purified serum IgE antibodies. The following day, Culicoides allergen was injected at the same sites. Skin reactions were not observed in response to allergen alone, and in two horses after stimulation at any previous IgE injection site. However, the other two horses showed an immediate skin reaction at the previous injection sites of IgE obtained from allergic horses. In addition, purified monoclonal antibodies to various equine immunoglobulin isotypes were injected i.d. into six healthy horses. Immediate skin reactions were observed in response to anti-IgE (6/6 horses) and anti-IgG(T) injections (5/6 horses). The specificities of both antibodies for IgE and IgG(T), respectively, were confirmed by enzyme linked immunosorbent assays. The results provide the first direct evidence that IgE mediates classical Type-I allergy in horses and plays a major role in the pathogenesis of summer eczema. The data also suggest that IgG(T) can bind to skin mast cells and might contribute to clinical allergy.
    Full-text · Article · Nov 2006 · Veterinary Research
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    ABSTRACT: Mare reproductive loss syndrome (MRLS) describes a condition of equine early-term and late-term fetal losses in which the etiol- ogy has not been fully characterized. Involvement of Eastern tent caterpillars (ETC) has been highly considered because oral administration of ETC rapidly induces abortion in pregnant mares. Pathologic lesions observed in placental and fetal tis- sues of horses with characteristics of MRLS were consistent with bacterial infection. In addition, a small percentage of the naturally affected MRLS horses developed metritis, pericarditis, and/or unilateral uveitis.
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