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Clinical and Developmental Immunology
Volume 2013, Article ID 267156, 9 pages
Review Article

Nuclear Antigens and Auto/Alloantibody Responses: Friend or Foe in Transplant Immunology

1Graduate Institute of Clinical Medical Sciences, Chang Gung University College of Medicine, 123 Ta-Pei Road, Niao-Sung, Kaohsiung 833, Taiwan
2Liver Transplantation Program and Division of Transplant Immunology, Center for Translational Research in Biomedical Sciences, Kaohsiung Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, 123 Ta-Pei Road, Niao-Sung, Kaohsiung 833, Taiwan
3Iwao Hospital, 3059-1 Kawakami, Yufu, Oita 879-5102, Japan

Received 16 January 2013; Accepted 19 March 2013

Academic Editor: Stanislav Vukmanovic

Copyright © 2013 Toshiaki Nakano et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


In addition to cellular immune responses, humoral immune responses, mediated by natural antibodies, autoantibodies, and alloantibodies, have increasingly been recognized as causes of organ transplant rejection. In our previous studies, we have demonstrated the induction of antinuclear antibodies against histone H1 and high-mobility group box 1 (HMGB1), in both experimental and clinical liver transplant tolerance. The active induction of antinuclear antibodies is usually an undesirable phenomenon, but it is often observed after liver transplantation. However, the release of nuclear antigens and its suppression by neutralizing antibodies are proposed to be important in the initiation and regulation of immune responses. In this review article, we summarize the current understanding of nuclear antigens and corresponding antinuclear regulatory antibodies (Abregs) on infection, injury, inflammation, transplant rejection, and tolerance induction and discuss the significance of nuclear antigens as diagnostic and therapeutic targets.