The Salivary Scavenger and Agglutinin in Early Life: Diverse Roles in Amniotic Fluid and in the Infant Intestine

M.P. Reichhardt, H. Jarva, M. de Been, J.M. Rodriguez, E.J. Quintana, V. Loimaranta, W.M. de Vos, S. Meri

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15 Citations (Scopus)


The salivary scavenger and agglutinin (SALSA), also known as gp340 and dmbt1, is an antimicrobial and inflammation-regulating molecule located at the mucosal surfaces. The present study revealed that SALSA was present in the amniotic fluid (AF) and exceptionally enriched in both meconium and feces of infants. Based on immunological and mass spectrometric analysis, SALSA was estimated to constitute up to 4–10% of the total protein amount in meconium, making it one of the most abundant proteins. SALSA proteins in the AF and intestinal samples were polymorphic and exhibited varying polypeptide compositions. In particular, a different abundance of peptides corresponding to functionally important structures was found in the AF and intestinal SALSA. The AF form of SALSA had a more intact structure and contained peptides from the zona pellucida domain, which is involved in cell differentiation and oligomerization. In contrast, the intestinal SALSA was more enriched with the scavenger receptor cysteine-rich domains. The AF, but not the meconium SALSA, bound to Streptococcus pyogenes, S. agalactiae, S. gordonii, and Escherichia coli. Furthermore, differential binding was observed also to known endogenous ligands C1q, mannose-binding lectin, and secretory IgA. Our results have thus identified mucosal body compartments, where SALSA is particularly abundant, and suggest that SALSA exhibits varying functions in the different mucosal locations. The high levels of SALSA in AF and the infant intestine suggest a robust and important function for SALSA during the fetal development and in the mucosal innate immune defense of infants.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5240-5248
JournalThe Journal of Immunology
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • surfactant protein-d
  • secretory immunoglobulin-a
  • malignant brain-tumors
  • terminal differentiation
  • bacterial recognition
  • streptococcus-mutans
  • glycoprotein gp-340
  • epithelial-cells
  • innate immunity
  • receptor

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