Biochemical and aggregation analysis of Bence Jones proteins from different light chain diseases

Laura A. Sikkink, Marina Ramirez-Alvarado

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


Deposition of immunoglobulin light chains is a result of clonal proliferation of monoclonal plasma cells that secrete free immunoglobulin light chains, also called Bence Jones proteins (BJP). These BJP are present in circulation in large amounts and excreted in urine in various light chain diseases such as light chain amyloidosis (AL), light chain deposition disease (LCDD) and multiple myeloma (MM). BJP from patients with AL, LCDD and MM were purified from their urine and studies were performed to determine their secondary structure, thermodynamic stability and aggregate formation kinetics. Our results show that LCDD and MM proteins have the lowest free energy of folding while all proteins show similar melting temperatures. Incubation of the BJP at their melting temperature produced morphologically different aggregates: amyloid fibrils from the AL proteins, amorphous aggregates from the LCDD proteins and large spherical species from the MM proteins. The aggregates formed under in vitro conditions suggested that the various proteins derived from patients with different light chain diseases might follow different aggregation pathways.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)29-39
Number of pages11
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2008


  • Aggregates
  • Amyloid
  • Circular dichroism
  • Electron microscopy
  • Fibrils
  • Light chain amyloidosis
  • Light chain deposition disease
  • Multiple myeloma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine


Dive into the research topics of 'Biochemical and aggregation analysis of Bence Jones proteins from different light chain diseases'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this