Immunoglobulin G4 (IgG4)-related disease (IgG4-RD) is an immune-mediated condition that can affect almost any organ and is now being recognized with increasing frequency. IgG4-RD is characterized by a lymphoplasmacytic infiltrate composed of IgG4+ plasma cells, storiform fibrosis, obliterative phlebitis, and mild to moderate eosinophilia. The diagnosis of IgG4-RD unifies many eponymous fibroinflammatory conditions that had previously been thought to be confined to single organs. IgG4-RD lesions are infiltrated by T helper cells, which likely cause progressive fibrosis and organ damage. IgG4 antibodies are generally regarded as noninflammatory. Although autoreactive IgG4 antibodies are observed in IgG4-RD, there is no evidence that they are directly pathogenic. Rituximab-induced B cell depletion in IgG4-RD leads to rapid clinical and histological improvement accompanied by swift declines in serum IgG4 concentrations. Although IgG autoantibodies against various exocrine gland antigens have been described in IgG4-RD, whether they are members of the IgG4 subclass is unknown. The contribution of autoantibodies to IgG4-RD remains unclear.


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  • Article Type: Review Article
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