Healthy immune repertoire contains a fraction of immunoglobulins that do not possess exquisite antigen
specificity but are able to recognize numerous unrelated antigens with similar values of the binding affinity. These
antibodies are referred to as polyreactive. Besides natural polyreactive antibodies immune repertoires contain
antibodies that acquire polyreactivity post-translationally, upon structural changes in their variable regions. In this
article we made an overview of the recent findings about antibody polyreactivity. After introduction of the
concept, and description of the origin, functions, and molecular mechanisms of polyreactive antibodies, we
discussed their role in autoimmunity, malignancy and infectious diseases. We made a parallel with similar data
about antibodies with induced polyreactivity. This review highlights the importance of natural and acquired antibody polyreactivity in
immune defense and surveillance and reveals their potential as a new type of therapeutics.
Keywords: Antibodies, antibody polyreactivity, autoimmunity, B cell malignancies, B cells, cryptic polyreactivity, HIV-1.
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