Infectious mononucleosis patients temporarily recognize a unique, cross-reactive epitope of Epstein-Barr virus nuclear antigen-1.
The spectrum of antibodies against Epstein-Barr virus nuclear antigen-1 (EBNA-1) in patients with a recent history of infectious mononucleosis and nonaffected EBV-positive individuals has been characterized by epitope mapping. Sera were evaluated for antibodies to all unique maximally overlapping octapeptides of EBNA-1. Both normal controls and patients with infectious mononucleosis produce IgG antibodies that recognize the glycine-alanine-rich portion of EBNA-1, as previously described. All EBNA-1 IgG-positive infectious mononucleosis patients tested, however, consistently produce IgG specific for an additional epitope (aa 398-412 PPPGRRPFFHPVGEA) near the middle of the EBNA-1 protein. This region was not found to be antigenic in healthy EBV-seropositive individuals. This region does, however, cross-react with the sequence PPPGMRPP from the common lupus spliceosomal autoantigen Sm B' in several infectious mononucleosis patient sera. Patients with recent clinical infectious mononucleosis temporarily recognize a unique cross-reactive epitope of EBNA-1 not bound by antibodies from non-infectious mononucleosis EBV-positive sera or those with a distant history of IM.
McClain, MT; Rapp, EC; Harley, JB; James, JA
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