During the routine examination of a healthy 31-yr-old woman, we found an incomplete deficiency of the 9th component of complement (C9). By hemolytic assay her serum C9 activity was 10 to 15% of normal. Limited family studies suggested that she inherited the deficiency as an autosomal codominant trait. She had no history of unusual or severe infections. When tested for bactericidal activity against serum-sensitive Neisseria gonorrhoeae and N. meningitidis, her serum reacted comparably to normal serum. Normal serum depleted immunochemically of C9 and sera from congenitally C9-deficient patients were also bactericidal against serum-sensitive Neisseria but required 120 min to kill the same numbers of gonococci that intact serum killed within 30 min. In the electron microscope, N. gonorrhoeae incubated with C9-depleted serum were fragmented but lacked the typical C lesions. Therefore, serum lacking C9 can kill serum-sensitive Neisseria, unlike sera deficient in the other terminal C components.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||5|
|Journal||Journal of Immunology|
|State||Published - Dec 1 1981|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy