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J Virol. 1999 Jun;73(6):5149-55.

Characterization of monoclonal antibodies raised against the latent nuclear antigen of human herpesvirus 8.

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  • 1Institute of Cancer Research, Chester Beatty Laboratories, London SW3 6JB, United Kingdom.


Human herpesvirus 8 (HHV-8; also designated Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus) is the likely etiological agent of Kaposi's sarcoma (KS). HHV-8 encodes a latent nuclear antigen (LNA) which is the product of the viral gene orf 73. LNA is recognized by most infected patient sera and is the basis of current immunofluorescence assays used in epidemiological studies of HHV-8 infection. Here we describe the characterization of four monoclonal antibodies raised to the C-terminal third of LNA-glutathione S-transferase fusion proteins. These monoclonal antibodies recognized discrete linear epitopes within the C terminus and repetitive region of LNA, detected antigen in primary effusion lymphoma (PEL) cells, and precipitated a 220- to 230-kDa protein doublet corresponding to LNA from HHV-8-infected PEL cell lines. In situ immunocytochemistry of KS lesions with these antibodies show that LNA is extensively expressed in KS spindle cells.

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