Subclasses of IgA antibodies in serum and saliva samples of newborns and infants immunized against rotavirus

M. G. Friedman, N. Entin, R. Zedaka, R. Dagan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Little is known about subclass levels of IgA in serum or saliva of infants in the perinatal period. We have previously shown that very young infants are capable of responding to an experimental rotavirus vaccine with both serum and salivary IgA, and that small amounts of IgA are already detectable in cord blood of these infants. In the present study, total IgA1 and IgA2 antibodies in serum and saliva samples of some of these infants at birth, at 6 weeks of age, and at 12 weeks of age, were determined by a quantitative ELISA. Also, subclass-specific IgA antibodies to the rotavirus group A common antigen were determined by ELISA. The ratio of average serum concentrations of IgA1 to IgA2 for 14 infants at 6 weeks of age was 19:1, while in saliva it was 5:1. Between 6 and 12 weeks of age levels of serum IgA1 increased by 25%, while levels of IgA2 did not increase perceptibly. Concentrations of IgA1 were higher in infant sera than in saliva, while concentrations of IgA2 were slightly higher in saliva than in serum. When calculated as specific ELISA units per mg IgA1, more salivary IgA1 was specific for rotavirus than serum IgA1. Further studies are needed to determine when infant IgA2 levels rise to values more characteristic of children and adults. This may be of significance for infant mucosal immunizations if secretory IgA2, more resistant to bacterial proteases than IgA1, is required for efficient defence of the respiratory and intestinal tracts.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)206-211
Number of pages6
JournalClinical and Experimental Immunology
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1 Jan 1996


  • IgA subclasses
  • Mucosal immune response
  • Neonates
  • Rotavirus vaccine
  • Serum IgA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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