Antibody Fc glycosylation discriminates between latent and active tuberculosis

Lenette L. Lu, Jishnu Das, Patricia S. Grace, Sarah M. Fortune, Blanca I. Restrepo, Galit Alter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


Background: Mycobacterium tuberculosis remains a global health problem and clinical management is complicated by difficulty in discriminating between latent infection and active disease. While M. tuberculosis-reactive antibody levels are heterogeneous, studies suggest that levels of IgG glycosylation differ between disease states. Here we extend this observation across antibody domains and M. tuberculosis specificities to define changes with the greatest resolving power. Methods: Capillary electrophoretic glycan analysis was performed on bulk non-antigen-specific IgG, bulk Fc domain, bulk Fab domain, and purified protein derivative (PPD)- and Ag85A-specific IgG from subjects with latent (n=10) and active (n=20) tuberculosis. PPD-specific isotype/subclass, PPD-specific antibody-dependent phagocytosis, cellular cytotoxicity, and natural killer cell activation were assessed. Discriminatory potentials of antibody features were evaluated individually and by multivariate analysis. Results: Parallel profiling of whole, Fc, and Fab domain-specific IgG glycosylation pointed to enhanced differential glycosylation on the Fc domain. Differential glycosylation was observed across antigen-specific antibody populations. Multivariate modeling highlighted Fc domain glycan species as the top discriminatory features, with combined PPD IgG titers and Fc domain glycans providing the highest classification accuracy. Conclusions: Differential glycosylation occurs preferentially on the Fc domain, providing significant discriminatory power between different states of M. tuberculosis infection and disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2093-2102
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Infectious Diseases
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 15 2020


  • Antibodies
  • Diagnostics
  • Fc effector function
  • Glycosylation
  • Tuberculosis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Infectious Diseases


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