Incubation of Legionella pneumophila Philadelphia 1 in normal human serum depleted of either classical-pathway component C1q or alternative-pathway component factor B resulted in activation of the complement system. Experiments focused on the role of the classical pathway in complement activation revealed that legionellae bound C1q independently of antibody. Purified preparations of L. pneumophila major outer membrane protein but not serogroup 1 lipopolysaccharide hound C1q independently of antibody. This suggests that antibody-independent binding of C1q by L. pneumophila can result in activation of the classical pathway in normal human serum and that major outer membrane protein may be a C1q acceptor on the L. pneumophila cell surface.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Infectious Diseases