Proceedings of the Japan Academy, Series B
Online ISSN : 1349-2896
Print ISSN : 0386-2208
Overview on poly(ADP-ribose) immuno-biomedicine and future prospects
Yoshiyuki KANAI
Author information

2016 Volume 92 Issue 7 Pages 222-236


Poly(ADP-ribose), identified in 1966 independently by three groups Strassbourg, Kyoto and Tokyo, is synthesized by poly(ADP-ribose) polymerases (PARP) from NAD+ as a substrate in the presence of Mg2+. The structure was unique in that it has ribose-ribose linkage. In the early-1970s, however, its function in vivo/in vitro was still controversial and the antibody against it was desired to help clear its significance. Thereupon, the author tried to produce antibody against poly(ADP-ribose) in rabbits and succeeded in it for the first time in the world. Eventually, this success has led to the following two groundbreaking papers in Nature: “Naturally-occurring antibody against poly(ADP-ribose) in patients with autoimmune disease SLE”, and “Induction of anti-poly(ADP-ribose) antibody by immunization with synthetic double-stranded RNA, poly(A)·poly(U)”.

On the way to the publication of the first paper, a reviewer gave me a friendly comment that there is “heteroclitic” fashion as a mechanism of the production of natural antibody. This comment was really a God-send for me, and became a train of power for publication of another paper, as described above. Accordingly, I thought this, I would say, episode is worth describing herein. Because of its importance in biomedical phenomena, a certain number of articles related to “heteroclitic” have become to be introduced in this review, although they were not always directly related to immuno-biological works on poly(ADP-ribose). Also, I tried to speculate on the future prospects of poly(ADP-ribose), product of PARP, as an immuno-regulatory molecule, including either induced or naturally-occurring antibodies, in view of “heteroclitic”.

Information related to the author
© 2016 The Japan Academy
Previous article Next article