Molecular cloning of the liver-specific rat F antigen

M. E. Gershwin, R. L. Coppel, E. Bearer, M. G. Peterson, A. Sturgess, I. R. Mackay

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F antigen is a 43-kDa widely conserved liver protein that has been intensively used in studies of immunogenicity and tolerance; two murine allotypes have been identified. Immunization of specific responder inbred strains with liver homogenates from the opposite allotype leads to precipitating antibody and cell-mediated immunity against F. The antibodies produced are autoantibodies as they react equally well with self. We have identified a cDNA clone from rat liver that reacts with alloantisera to F. The fused polypeptide produced by the clone was shown to correspond to F by several experiments. First, alloantisera to F antigen reacted with the cloned fused polypeptide, but not control recombinant clones. Second, mice immunized with the fused polypeptide generate an antibody response that reacts specifically with the 43-kDa protein of mouse liver homogenates and with highly purified F antigen. Finally, both anti-F allosera and sera from mice immunized with the fused polypeptide react with the same 43-kDa liver protein on two-dimensional immunoblots. The nucleotide and deduced amino acid sequence of the clone are presented and the sequence was found to have a significant homology with L28, an Escherichia coli ribosomal protein. The availability of recombinant F antigen will allow definitive questions to the addressed with respect to epitopes and specifically the identification of the T cell epitope which allows for autoimmune responses.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3828-3833
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Immunology
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 1987
Externally publishedYes

Cite this

Gershwin, M. E., Coppel, R. L., Bearer, E., Peterson, M. G., Sturgess, A., & Mackay, I. R. (1987). Molecular cloning of the liver-specific rat F antigen. Journal of Immunology, 139(11), 3828-3833.